March 8, 2013
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Ohio State held its annual NFL Pro Day at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center Friday morning and more than 40 NFL scouts and coaches, representing 28 NFL teams, were on hand to test the skill sets of a dozen Buckeyes who are working to continue their playing careers at the next level.
Buckeyes on hand competing in some or all of the activities were FB/LB Zach Boren, DB Zach Domicone, OT Reid Fragel, DT Garrett Goebel, DT Johnathan Hankins, CB Travis Howard, SAF Orhian Johnson, WR Taylor Rice, TE/H Jake Stoneburner, DE/LB Nathan Williams, LB Etienne Sabino and DT Kharim Stephens.
Big Ten defensive player and lineman of the year John Simon was measured - arm, hand, wingspan and height - and weighed in, but he did not complete in any drills as he recovers from an upper body issue. Simon, who was one of seven Buckeyes who attended the NFL Combine two weeks ago, is scheduled to work out for the pro scouts and coaches on March 25.
While statistics and measurements were not publicly available, we were able to learn via interviews with the participants afterward that:
Jake Stoneburner was pleased with a 4.52 time in the 40-yard dash. "To be 250 pounds, run a 4.5 40, run receiver routes and not drop any balls helped," Stoneburner said moments after catching more than a dozen tight spirals thrown from 2006 Heisman Trophy winner, Buckeye graduate and good guy Troy Smith;
Another good guy, Orhian Johnson, had a vertical jump of nearly 40 inches (38.5);
Linebacker Etienne Sabino powered through a personal-best bench press total of 30 reps at 225 pounds; and
A shirtless Reid Fragel, a towering presence at 6-feet-7-inches, 305 pounds and chiseled like a linebacker, had a wingspan of just over 80 inches.
About Big Hank
Johnathan Hankins, who is foregoing his senior season to enter the NFL Draft, said the thing he has been hearing from teams that they like about him is that "I'm a big guy, fairly athletic and I can move."
From the Great White North
Teams and scouts were asked to sign in prior to the start of pro day. That list is the source for our number of 28 teams attending from the NFL. That's how we also learned there was one team from the Canadian Football League with a scout in attendance: Winnipeg.
Pros at Pro Day
It wouldn't be a pro day at Ohio State without two handfuls of pros in the house. The Buckeyes had more than 30 former players in the National Football League last season and some of those who stopped by Friday to cheer on their Buckeye brothers included Mike Adams (Pittsburgh), Justin Boren (Baltimore/Denver), Bobby Carpenter (Detroit/New England), Jim Cordle (New York Giants), Dan "Boom" Herron (Cincinnati) and DeVier Posey (Houston).
Former NFL Buckeyes - now retired - at pro day would make for the start of a pretty good team: Joey Galloway, Chris Spielman, Raymont Harris, Mike Vrabel, Dick LeBeau and of course, Troy Smith.