Posted April 22nd, 2009 by BT
Filed under: Draft, Feature, Football

Name: [tag]Brian Orakpo[/tag]
Position: Defensive End
Height: 6-3
Weight: 263 pounds
Hometown: Houston, TX

Strengths: Chiseled athlete with explosive first step, he is the best pure pass rusher in the draft. Uses his hands to fight off blocks and tries to stripe the ball on every sack. Not great versus the run, but not a liability either. Tireless worker in the weight room. Absolutely destroyed OU’s Phil Loadholt when they played, who at the time was considered a first day pick.

Weaknesses: Can get swallowed by bigger tackles, maybe he is too reliant on his speed rush? Has had knee injuries for the past two years, and he tends to play high which leaves him susceptible to re-injury. Originally weighed 215, Orakpo is now up to 263; so his frame may be maxed out. Will give up several inches to NFL tackles, which really hampers his leverage. Despite all his impressive measurables, could stand to gain some lower body strength so he can drive through blockers that engage him.

Overall: Elite pass rushing talent, teams would be better served letting him be a speed rusher than trying to make him an OLB. The knee is troubling, but none of his injuries were really serious. Might get swallowed by tackles at the next level in the run game, but his burst will give him a chance to get to the QB. May not be Mario Williams, but could be Dwight Freeney.

Projection: 1st round, pick 8-15

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Posted April 21st, 2009 by BT
Filed under: Draft, Feature, Football

Name: [tag]Roy Miller[/tag]
Position: Defensive Tackle
Height: 6-1
Weight: 310 pounds
Hometown: Killeen, TX

Strengths: A classic plugger, he mans the middle and controls it. For a big guy he makes a lot of plays in the backfield and was impossible to single-block for basically the entire season. Tireless motor, Miller never seems to stop driving up the field. Very underrated in his career, he could step in and start for a lot of 4-3 teams his first year.

Weaknesses: Short, he’ll give up inches basically every play at the next level. Less than great burst, so don’t look for him to generate much of a rush. Could be a tweener, he’s not heavy enough to be an absorber (takes on two blocks every play) nor is he explosive enough to be a consistent pass rusher.

Overall: Doesn’t jump out of the gym or pass the eyeball test, but he always seemed to be around the ball. May not be cut out to be a 3-4 nose, but could be very good as a 4-3 DT. You can find prospects with better numbers, but I bet you they don’t work as hard. Miller will be a steal for someone.

Projection: Late 2nd/Early 3rd round

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I’m not sure when or if Texas running back [tag]Chris Ogbonnaya[/tag] is going to be drafted in this weekend’s NFL Draft, but no matter what this young man is going to be successful in life. The official site has yet another great article on Chris’ life and academics off the football field:

When Chris Ogbonnaya came to Texas in 2004, he wasn’t totally sure how he’d fit into the Longhorn football program, but one thing was certain. He was going to take advantage of the opportunity, both on the field and off. The results of five years of hard work were All-Big 12 honors both athletically and academically, two degrees and a chance to play in the NFL. Ogbonnaya will share those experiences as the student-athlete speaker during the 2009 Academic Awards Presentation on Monday at the Frank Erwin Center.



Posted April 20th, 2009 by BT
Filed under: Draft, Feature, Football

Name: [tag]Henry Melton[/tag]
Position: Defensive End
Height: 6-4
Weight: 269 pounds
Hometown: Grapevine, TX

Strengths: Taller, heavier and boasting a faster 40 time than [tag]Brian Orakpo[/tag], Melton is an intriguing prospect. Holds his ground well against the run and is can get up the field well against the pass. Has great feet for a big guy, which comes from his history as a running back. May just be scratching the surface of his potential.

Weaknesses: For all his measurables, only had four sacks in his only season as a full-time starter. Doesn’t have a lot of pass rushing moves, basically just relies on his athleticism. His initial burst is not nearly elite, so it’s totally possible he could wind up running into piles at the next level. In his former life as a running back, he seemed to prefer to use his athleticism to avoid contact rather than use his size to overpower tacklers; that sure doesn’t bode well for teams drafting him to crack heads in the trenches.

Overall: More of a prospect rather than product, Melton is simply just a talent at this point. His impressive numbers will probably get some team to reach for him, but whoever gets him will have to be patient with his development. Might be best served as in the “other guy” role, playing opposite an elite rusher like Mario Williams or Jared Allen.

Projection: 4th or 5th round

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Posted April 18th, 2009 by BT
Filed under: Draft, Feature, Football

Name: [tag]Quan Cosby[/tag]
Position: Wide Receiver
Height: 5-9
Weight: 196 pounds
Hometown: Mart, TX

Strengths: With his Superglue fingers and disciplined routes, the Quan probably was the Horns’ second most valuable offensive player. Adjusts well when his quarterback in on the move, catches the ball in traffic and is a very enthusiastic downfield blocker. Quick enough to get initial separation and makes both the routine and the acrobatic catches, rarely suffering a concentration lapse. Very mature player who leads by example. Strong enough to consistently beat jams, and can go up and get the ball over taller corners. All things considered, he was one of the most clutch players in the [tag]Mack Brown[/tag] era.

Weaknesses: Small, only 5-9 and seems to have short arms. Quicker than he is fast, he couldn’t consistently get deep in college. Played in the spread, so he saw lots of single coverage. Just okay after the catch, if a DB wraps up he can’t power through. May be vulnerable to press coverage at the next level. Age (2926) is a concern to some.

Overall: Due to the long careers many receivers have, age should not be a determining factor. Probably will be a #3 receiver early in his career, but with his discipline and effort he should be able to beat nickel backs and find soft spots in zone. Teams that employ the 3 WR sets would be well served to give him a look. Same size and speed of Wes Welker… just saying.

Projection: 4th or 5th round

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ESPN’s Todd McShay is one of the best in the business and he’s got Texas’ [tag]Brian Orakpo[/tag] headed to the Cleveland Browns with the 5th pick in his latest mock draft. He also has some pretty high praise for Rak:

Orakpo exited the combine as the top hybrid DE/OLB in the 2009 class. His pass-rushing skills would be a welcome addition to a Cleveland defense that notched just 17 sacks in 2008.

Some experts aren’t as high on Orakpo as McShay, claiming he’s close to his ceiling and knock him somehow for being a high motor guy. Of the defensive ends that are available he is definitely the best bet, but I could see him falling a little based on team needs near the top of the draft. They’re calling him a hybrid DE/OLB but he didn’t play much without his hand on the ground at Texas so it will be interesting to see if a 3-4 team thinks he could play linebacker in that scheme.

Update: Orakpo goes 3rd to KC Chiefs in another mock draft on


Lance Zierlein of the Houston Chronicle has posted his list of the five best and worst underclassmen decisions of 2009 draft and I think they’re pretty dead on. He’s one of the few guys out there that really knows his stuff regarding the [tag]NFL Draft[/tag] and Big 12 football.

Zierlein thinks Texas linebacker/defensive end [tag]Sergio Kindle[/tag] made the right call by returning to Texas for his senior season. Right now Kindle is still relatively raw at both linebacker and as a pass rusher, and with another year of seasoning under [tag]Will Muschamp[/tag] he could explode in 2009. I also agree completely with his thoughts on the decisions by players such as USC’s Mark Sanchez, OU’s Sam Bradford, and Kansas State’s Josh Freeman.

The relevant notes from Zierlein are posted below:


3. Sergio Kindle, DE/OLB, Texas – Staying In: Kindle opened up many scouts eyes as a pass-rusher this year at Texas. Will Muschamp recognized that Kindle’s top potential wasn’t at LB but as a pass rusher. Kindle has good straight line speed but needs to become a more fluid athlete and he has a chance to do that with another year at Texas.


2. Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma – Staying In: I say this is a bad decision, but as long as he plays well next year, he’ll be a top 3 pick next season. The problem is that he is losing almost his entire offensive line as well as two of his top targets. Injury is the only real concern for me here, but he probably would have been a top 3 pick this season and maybe the top pick.

3. Josh Freeman, QB, Kansas State – Coming Out – What are you thinking, Josh? You have the size and arm strength that NFL teams would salivate over if you could just put together a big year on the collegiate level. Why not go back and improve on your numbers and then become the hot name in the 2010 draft?



Posted December 8th, 2008 by Brian
Filed under: Draft, Feature, Football

Colt McCoy will return for his senior season

Colt McCoy will return for his senior season

Texas’ hopes for the 2009 season just got a lot higher. Junior quarterback (and Heisman leader) [tag]Colt McCoy[/tag] told the Austin American-Statesman today that he would be staying at UT for his senior season. Here’s the Bevo Beat story:

Longhorns quarterback Colt McCoy will stay for his senior season.

McCoy told the American-Statesman of his decision Monday.

“I’m not going anywhere,” McCoy said.

McCoy said he wants to play for a national championship, after falling one spot short of the title game this season.

“I’m coming back because we have a solid coaching staff,” he said. “And I’m coming back because I feel like I can develop the young receivers we have.”

McCoy said he will not “initiate” an evaluation with the NFL underclassmen committee. He said his coaches may ask for an evaluation for informational purposes, but he does not plan on asking them to do so.

McCoy is a redshirt junior. After this semester, he’ll have 12 hours remaining before he graduates. He said he’s planning on doing an internship this summer and will take a final course next fall, then graduate.

Freaking. Fantastic. News.

It can’t be overstated how important this is for the Longhorns in 2009. [tag]John Chiles[/tag] improved by leaps and bounds this season but he’s not ready to lead this team where they’re capable of going. This team should be in this year’s title game and (depending on who returns at OU) and with McCoy returning will likely be one of the top three teams in next year’s preseason polls. The Longhorns are less than a month away from playing in the [tag]Fiesta Bowl[/tag] and I’m already fired up for next season.


According to Sports Illustrated draft expert Tony Pauline, Texas wide receiver [tag]Quan Cosby[/tag] is one of the biggest risers for the 2009 NFL Draft. He thinks he is a midround selection but could be headed toward a long NFL career.

Quan Cosby/WR/Texas: The Longhorns sure handed pass-catcher finished his senior campaign with career numbers and now has scouts grading him as a potential mid-round choice. Cosby came up big during critical moments all season and projects as a fourth receiver in the NFL.

Love to see this as Quan has been one of my favorite players the last two seasons. He just has a knack for making the big play and never letting his quarterback down. I’m not sure I’ve seen a college receiver make as many in traffic, while being pass interfered catches as Quan has at Texas. His absence due to injury during the [tag]Texas Tech[/tag] was one of the biggest reasons the Horns came up short. It be great if Quan (and two or three more good WRs) could end up in Tennessee to help out [tag]Vince Young[/tag].


We’ve heard this before but that doesn’t mean it’s not great news: Texas quarterback [tag]Colt McCoy[/tag] says he will return to Texas for his senior season. Of course, until press conferences announcing they were gone both [tag]Vince Young[/tag] and [tag]TJ Ford[/tag] were saying the exact same thing. There’s a long time and a lot that can happen before McCoy needs to make a final decision, but as a high school coach’s son Colt seems like the type of kid who will want to not only finish his education but leave Texas as a legend.

From the

There is not a high level of agreement among scouts about where Colt McCoy will ultimately fit into the NFL draft. As for the “when,” the Texas junior quarterback — a favorite to win the 2008 Heisman Trophy — made that clear this week, telling Sporting News, “I’m going to play here for four years.”

“I’ve been blessed to be able to play here,” McCoy said. “Not very many people get to (start) here for four years, so what an opportunity.”

While he has solid size and fantastic accuracy, McCoy lacks prototypical NFL arm strength. His play so far this season has gotten his name mentioned occasionally as a first round guy but he’s more likely a mid-rounder. NFL scouts fall in love with QBs with the huge arm and guys like Colt fall to teams not looking for immediate help at the position.

ESPN NFL Draft expert Mel Kiper thinks highly of his NFL prospects and agrees with Colt that he’s a similar player to NFL starters Tony Romo and Jake Delhomme:

Both Romo an Delhomme are great NFL players, but ironically neither was drafted high so the comparison is a little awkward. Maybe the success of guys like Romo and Tom Brady mean teams are more likely to take a quarterback based on skill, success, and intangibles and not just arm strength. Hopefully we won’t find out until 2010 with Colt.

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