Cowboy Combine concludes

Wyoming held its second annual Cowboy Combine Monday afternoon at the indoor practice facility. Players were tested for the final time before the start of spring drills on Saturday.

Players were tested in the: 40-yard dash, I-drill (tests lateral movement), L-drill (also known as the cone drill), standing broad jump and standing vertical leap.

Coach Dave Christensen won’t release times and distances. As he told me in his office Monday morning: “That’s for our opponents to find out on the field.”

This was the last of five consecutive weeks of testing for UW, and I would estimate there easily was 30 personal-records set by numerous players.

Some quick highlights:

–One of the fastest, if not the fastest player on the team looks to be junior-college safety Luke Anderson from Blinn College in Texas. He had PR-ed in the 40, I-test and L-drill.

“I was the fastest at Blinn and I came in here hoping I would be the fastest here. I’m not going to say I’m the fastest,” Anderson said.

If that kind of speed can translate on the field, Anderson will have a great chance to start at one of the two safety positions vacated by Chris Prosinski, who was a senior last season, and sophomore Shamiel Gary, who left after the season and who is currently a walk-on at Oklahoma State.

–Juniors B.J. Sumter and Kurt Taufa’asua, both transfers from New Mexico Military Institute and were redshirted last season, set PRs in the 40, broad jump and L-drill. Both were brought in to play defensive tackle, but Sumter was moved to offensive line, where he will get a look at guard this spring. Sumter said he played offensive tackle in high school in South Carolina.

–Senior safety Tashaun Gipson had PRs in everything but the vertical jump. Gipson said he’s up to 210 pounds and looks bigger. Last year’s roster listed him at 6-foot, 203 pounds, but Gipson said he played at about 195.

–“The thing I notice the most is the guys that weren’t really competing last year have really stepped up and are showing themselves. Those are the guys you notice coming out of their shells.” — senior defensive end Gabe Knapton.

See Tuesday’s Wyoming Tribune Eagle www.wyomingnews.com and Laramie Boomerang www.laramieboomerang.com for more from the Cowboy Combine, including a couple of key defensive players who have added weight but haven’t lost any speed or skill.

12 thoughts on “Cowboy Combine concludes

  1. RG:

    Thanks for the info on the combine. It looks like you only reported on Defensive players. Were you able to see any of the O players like the QB’s or WR’s?

    • Players came in and out pretty fast. I didn’t see the QBs do anything.

      I saw McNeill set PRs in a couple of drills, including the 40. Again, no times or distances were given to us. McNeill also looked like he added some muscle to his frame.

      T.J. Smith looked decent at WR. Herron looked pretty good running and jumping, as did Ogbonna.

    • One last thing Tim, I talked to Alexander, too, and he had already done his testing last week so he didn’t do anything on this day. Didn’t get to see Muhammad much, unfortunatley.

      RG

  2. This O-line thing is a bit concerning, that was a huge problem for us last year giving our QB adequate time for scanning the field. I’m sure the coaching staff realizes for us to put a sophomore or freshman under center and read the defense then react with the spread properly, this may present a huge dilemna. Gosh, I wish we would have picked up 2 to 3 more O lineman. That big kid from Illinois was a stud we ended up losing out on. Drat.

    • The O-line issue is a big concern. Fleischman’s injury came just recently. However, as O-line coach Pete Kaligis told me in passing at yesterday’s Cowboy Combine it’s a chance for some guys who have kind of been hanging around like Magnuson, Self and a couple of others a chance to shine this spring. We shall see.

      RG

    • Hi Steve,

      I saw him run his 40. Didn’t look bad but nothing really stood out either. Christensen said he’s curious to see how he competes this spring with Alexander and Muhammad.

  3. Giving others a chance to shine? Translation…oh crap! This is why i was skeptical about our class. I knew we needed more OL guys and we are already dealing with injuries. Injuries ussually stem from lack of fitness/strength. Getting hurt in the weightroom is inexcusable. Very frustrating. If we shorten the gaps again and resort back to that 4 play offense that we ran last year, we are in trouble. 44pts against csu is one thing. When big red comes to town, i just hope it isnt a repeat of the boise beating we took last year. This isnt looking good.

    • I agree that it’s a blow right now Joe. The DiRe thing is unfortunate and more of a bad luck kind of thing. Not something that could have been prevented.

      Fleischman was in a walking boot and crutches during the combine thing on Monday.

      Thing is, three of the guys that played tackle most of the season — Leonard, Kirven and Hutchins — are back and healthy (although I think Leonard might miss some spring time as well, but not much). Not a lot of talk about those guys. To me that almost is as discouraging as the loss of the young guys that are unproven.

  4. Robert,

    See if you can get a comment from the head Horseman about the shortage of stock in the gates at the OL position. We have got major improvement to make in that area, in particular. One thing I know about College Football is that for the O to run and compete, we need a strong line. Tiller and Roach both put there best efforts into that position. Its not all about QB and speed. Hell, without a line we will be in a bad state of affairs.

    • The head Horseman told me he and his staff won’t cry over it and will move on with the players he has. He said they felt good with some of the new guys they brought in, but have lost Vonachek (last season) and now DiRe, and Fleischman is out for a long period of time right now. Also, Puetz left after spring last season. The JC guy from Mississippi should help, but he comes in at fall camp.

      I asked if they might look and see if any O-linemen are around after the signing period and if they might pick on up late like they did with Aiken and Herron at WR last year. He said they would look but wasn’t real confident one would be around.

      Basically, DC felt the problem was addressed in recruiting and now has been handed a couple of tough blows. Now, like with all the other positions, he plans to move on with who they have. That’s basically where they stand right now.

      RG

      • Gotta love the big guy. No crying, lets just get it done! I admire that about this Coach. Thanks for the conclusion. In DC, we trust!

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