Several seniors from this past season have been, or will be participating in, various college all-star games this month. Here are the relevant updates thus far, with more to come as I continue to scour the interwebs for any ounce of positive news I can find coming from last year's football team:
Russell participated in the East-West Shrine game on Saturday afternoon. I was unable to watch as I am still rehabbing my knee and had a nice long session with my physical therapist that ended with a bag of ice and a two hour nap. After reading countless articles about the outcome of the game, all that I could find that mentioned him was in regards to how well he performed in practice. By all accounts, the coaching staff loved his athleticism in drills and scrimmages.
This was the 90th edition of the Shrine game, which showcases the top players in the country, and is the nation's longest-running college all-star game.
Russell had a disappointing senior season. He was widely expected to be a statistical leader for the defense this past year, but registered just 6.5 tackles for a loss and 3 sacks. That being said, he still possesses the size and athleticism that NFL scouts love (6'5", 275lbs) and is still considered to have a very high ceiling. Russell will be drafted, but probably not until at least round 4 or 5.
As the leading rusher for the Boilers in 2014, Hunt ran for 949 yards and 6 touchdowns. He also played in the Medal of Honor Bowl last Saturday, January 10th, to help improve his possible draft stock. Hunt performed well, rushing 7 times for a net of 30 yards.
Hunt is another player that I could easily see making an NFL roster next year, be it through the draft or as a free agent pickup. I hate player comparisons in general, but his style reminds me of a poor-man's Darren Sproles. Obviously, Sproles had a much more decorated college career. It's just that their styles of play - dangerous in space as a receiver or out of the backfield - simply mirror each other. Sproles is just 5'6". Hunt is 5'8". There were several NFL teams with abysmal run games this year that would greatly benefit from a guy like Hunt on their roster.
Gabe Holmes (TE) and Jesse Schmitt (Long Snapper) will be playing in the College Gridiron Showcase later this month.
I'm going to go back to watching replays of Kendall's 3 from Saturday night now. Enjoy your day.