2010 NFL Combine Looks Like an Iowa Hawkeye Party
Some people might think college football is over until August.
Technically, they might have a point, but a true fan knows that college football never sleeps. As the 2010 NFL Scouting Combine approaches, that proves more true than ever.
On Monday, the list of seniors invited to participate in the combine was announced. Teams like LSU, Texas, and USC pepper the list with several player names, all trying to work their way into the NFL.
Surprising no one in the Big Ten, at least five Iowa Hawkeye seniors have been invited to the combine. That is the most of any Big Ten team.
On defense, linebackers Pat Angerer and A.J. Edds both received an invite.
Angerer led the Hawkeyes in tackles with 145 on the year (48 solo, 97 assisted). He didn't only lead the team, he chalked up at least 50 more tackles than any other player. His total landed him second in the Big Ten and sixth in the nation.
Edds was fourth on the 2009 Iowa team in tackles, averaging almost six a game. He is known for being a smart and fundamentally sound player. His five interceptions on the year earned him a tie for second in the Big Ten.
On offense, tight end Tony Moeaki, tackle Kyle Calloway, and guard Dace Richardson all received invites.
Moeaki has had an injury-plagued career at Iowa, but his talent is undeniable. Add in his speed and size, and it becomes clear why NFL teams are already drooling over the chance to draft him.
Richardson also suffered his fair share of injuries during his career, but is still thought of as one of the better offensive lineman in this year's draft. For a while, Richardson had considered seeking a sixth year of eligibility to play at Iowa. His injury this year might have changed his mind, though.
"I have to be smart about it, too," he told reporters. "I have an opportunity to play at the next level. Even though I was hurt, people are still interested...do I want to risk getting hurt and losing out on that opportunity? I’ve got to weigh all those things in."
Experienced offensive tackle Calloway doesn't have a lot of injuries to explain to potential NFL teams, but he might have to explain the logic of a 6'7'' offensive lineman riding a moped drunk through a police barricade.
Calloway was arrested for drunk driving before the season started and was suspended for a game to start the season. His plethora of experience as a starter has NFL teams willing to over look his drunken Evil Knievel antics, though.
A few more Iowa names are likely to join the seniors on the invite list.
Underclassmen and additional seniors will be added to the invite list before the combine starts on Feb. 24. At that point, two more Hawkeyes will be added.
Junior offensive tackle Bryan Bulaga announced he will forego his senior season to test the NFL waters. The 2009 Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year is projected as a mid-first round draft pick.
Defensive back Amari Spievey also announced he will skip his senior season for the draft. Spievey is highly regarded as one of the best cornerbacks in the Big Ten. He has had difficulties with academics in the past, which could have been a factor in his decision.
When the scouting combine, slated for Feb. 24 through March 2 in Indianapolis, begins, Iowa's presence will definitely be known.
Hopefully, they all get drafted.
BIG TEN COMBINE INVITE LIST
Illinois: G Jon Asamoah, TE Michael Hoomanawanui
Indiana: DE Jammie Kirlew, DE Greg Middleton, S Nick Polk, OT Rodger Saffold
Iowa: LB Pat Angerer, OT Kyle Calloway, OLB Andrew A.J. Edds, TE Tony Moeaki, G Dace Richardson.
Michigan: DE Brandon Graham, P Zoltan Mesko, RB Brandon Minor
Michigan State: K Brett Swenson, WR Blair White
Minnesota: WR Eric Decker, OLB Simoni Lawrence, LB Nathan Triplett
Northwestern: QB Mike Kafka, CB Sherrick McManis, DE Corey Wootton
Ohio State: S Kurt Coleman, K Aaron Pettrey, DT Doug Worthington
Penn State: QB Daryll Clark, OLB Sean Lee, DT Jared Odrick, TE Andrew Quarless
Purdue: DT Mike Neal, CB David Pender
Wisconsin: TE Garrett Graham, DE O'Brien Schofield
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