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2020-02-22 15:09:391 Oct 2018 01:53 AM EST
-by Daniel Mogollon, Staff Writer; Image: Ohio State cornerback Jeff Okudah defends pass against Clemson. (Image Source: Kevin French/Getty Images)
Here’s a quick look at the players from the Big Ten East invited to the NFL Scouting Combine:
Indiana (1): OL Simon Stepaniak
It should come as no surprise that the Hoosiers have just one invitee or that their invitee is an offensive lineman. They’ve had more than two players drafted just once in the past decade and three of their past five draftees were offensive linemen, including Day 2 selections Jason Spriggs (Round 2) and Dan Feeney (Round 3).
Maryland (3): S Antoine Brooks Jr., RB Javon Leake, RB Anthony McFarland
The Terps can and always have been able to recruit speed. Of their 15 players drafted since 2011, four were wide receivers, three were defensive backs, and two were running backs. Their trio is very athletic with runners Anthony McFarland and Javon Leake two of the most explosive players in the Big Ten at the combine.
Michigan (11): OL Ben Bredeson, CB Lavert Hill, LB Khaleke Hudson, TE Sean McKeon, S Josh Metellus, OL Mike Onwenu, QB Shea Patterson, WR Donovan Peoples-Jones, OL Cesar Ruiz, OL Jon Runyan, LB Josh Uche
Michigan’s top prospects (Donovan Peoples-Jones, Cesar Ruiz, Josh Uche) all had eligibility remaining and should all hear their names called on Day 2. UM could have as many as four offensive linemen selected, which would equal the same number of O-linemen the program has had drafted in the past six years combined.
Michigan State (7): LB Joe Bachie, QB Brian Lewerke, CB Josiah Scott, WR Darrell Stewart, WR Cody White, DL Kenny Willekes, DL Raequan Williams
After only having five players drafted in the past three years, Sparty has seven players invited to Indianapolis. While they all won’t get drafted, you can see why there were high expectations for this group coming into the season. Josiah Scott, Darrell Stewart, and Cody White are intriguing prospects to follow at the combine.
Ohio State (11): CB Doman Arnette, RB JK Dobbins, S Jordan Fuller, DL DaVon Hamilton, LB Malik Harrison, WR K.J. Hill, OL Jonah Jackson, WR Austin Mack, CB Jeff Okudah, WR Ben Victor, DL Chase Young
Are the Buckeyes the new Cornerback U? In the past six drafts, OSU has produced seven corners, with four going in the first round. Jeff Okudah could join Denzel Ward as a top-five pick while Doman Arnette might sneak into Round 1. Did I say CBU? Chase Young is expected to be OUS’s third D-end to go top three since ’16.
Penn State (5): LB Cameron Brown, DL Yetur Gross-Matos, WR KJ Hamler, CB John Reid, DL Rob Windsor
If defensive end Yetur Gross-Matos breaks into the first round, he’ll be the first Nittany Lions defender to go in Round 1 since Jared Odrick, while fellow underclassman KJ Hamler has a chance to be their highest-draft receiver since 2003 if he cracks the top 60 as many project. But, their streak of six draft picks could end.
Rutgers (0): None
No one who watched the Scarlet Knights play this past season is surprised that no one will be representing the program in Indianapolis. They’ve had four players drafted in the past two years, with at least one player selected in four of the past five NFL Drafts. Also, OSU’s Jonah Jackson (grad transfer) played three seasons at RU.
Daniel Mogollon is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America and the Football Writers Association of America. He is also a voter for the Thorpe and the Rotary Lombardi Award, as well as the Latino Sports MVP Awards.
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