Ten former ACU football players performed in front of NFL scouts, looking to show off their skill sets at the annual ACU pro day and left scouts with a lot to think about.
Running back Charkandrick West and wide receiver Taylor Gabriel headlined the group of players, posting a 4.27 in the 40-yard dash. To put that number in perspective, Adrain Peterson ran a 4.38 40-yard dash coming out of Oklahoma University.
Each player’s times were enhanced slightly by a wind at their back, but there are very few players that could post that time no matter what type of wind they were running with.
“Numbers like that just remind me of their productivity,” head coach Ken Collums said. “The thing with Taylor is he is an explosive guy but he could stop too. I was just grateful to have those guys and it makes me proud for them because I know they have put in the work to clock that 40 time. Yeah, there was a wind behind them but the bottom line is those guys can run. They worked hard and they performed for those scouts.”
Gabriel also had a vertical jump of 40 inches, while West posted a 41-inch vertical. Gabriel did 18 bench press reps at 225 pounds, while West did 15.
Wide receiver Darrell Cantu-Harkless also performed in front of scouts during pro day and earned a tryout in Dallas with the Calgary Stampede of the Canadian Football League after showing the versatility that made him a dangerous weapon for the Wildcats.
Several former ACU offensive linemen also showed their skills at the pro day. Will Latu, Blake Spears and Josh Perez did drills, ran and lifted for NFL scouts. All three players were staples in the Wildcats offensive line for multiple seasons. Perez turned heads when he did 40 bench press reps of 225 pounds.
Former ACU cornerbacks Caleb Withrow and Stephen Ford also worked out at ACU’s pro day along with former ACU linebacker Jesse Harper, who went through fullback drills.
More than a third of the NFL teams attended the pro day looking for potential players. The teams were the Browns, Chargers, Chiefs, Colts, Cowboys, Eagles, Falcons, Panthers, Raiders, Rams and Texans.
“This whole thing with playing in the NFL and making it and finding a place you can stick is about finding the right fit at the right time,” Collums said. “You will see guys bounce around for years and then they finally stick on with a team because the timing was right and the need was right. It will be a key is to find the right football team with the right needs and hopefully the timing will be right.”
The NFL draft is May 8 through May 10 and the CFL draft will take place May 13.