A Very American Coup By Michael – Louis Ingram, Editor-in-Chief...
BASN DRAFT REDUX WITH TEE MACK!
BASN DRAFT REDUX- NFL 2015
By Anthony McClean, Editor -in-Chief, Emeritus
NEW HAVEN — Here is a capsule look at the four HBCU players that were picked in this year’s NFL Draft as well as a list of HBCU players that were given free agent contracts. Players are listed by order of where they were chosen.
DT Rodney Gunter, Delaware State
(116th overall by Cardinals)
The skinny: Gunter was a four-year starter from 2011 to 2014, competing in each of the Hornets’ 45 games during the span. He was an All-MEAC First Team selection in 2013; and second team pick in 2012 and 2014. His career stats include 99 solo tackles and 89 assists, 37 tackles-for-loss and 18 sacks. He was the Hornets’ sack leader in each of the last three seasons.
Historically: He’s DSU’s first NFL draft pick since wide receiver Darnerien McCants was taken by Washington in 2001. He’s also the Hornets’ highest draft pick since receiver John Taylor was selected by the San Francisco 49ers in the third round in 1986.
What they’re saying: “A lot of fans are probably going to say, ‘Who is Rodney Gunter?’ I have a strong conviction, Coach (Brice Arians) has a strong conviction, in the next couple of years our fans will know real well who Rodney Gunter is.” — Cardinals’ General Manager Michael Keim.
CB Tray Walker, Texas Southern
(136th overall by Ravens)
The skinny: Walker played in 11 games last season and registered three interceptions. He had nine interceptions in 42 college games.
Historically: Walker was TSU’s first draftee since wide receiver Joey Jamison was taken by the Green Bay Packers in 2000. He also joins WR Calvin Muhammed (1980) and DT Charles Philyaw (1976) as prominent ex-Tigers that were previously drafted by the Raiders.
What they’re saying: “To be able to get a size-speed corner in the fourth round is huge for us.” — Ravens’ General Manager Ozzie Newsome.
OG Robert Myers, Tennessee State
(176th overall by Ravens)
The skinny: Myers was the only offensive player to start all 12 contests as a senior and he earned a spot on the All-OVC Second Team for the second straight year. He also participated in the 2015 Reese’s Senior Bowl and the NFL Scouting Combine.
Historically: Tennessee State has now had 22 offensive lineman taken in the NFL Draft and four in the last two seasons.
What they’re saying: “I think (offensive line coach) Juan (Castillo) likes to work with tough guys who are hard-working guys. That’s what he came back and told us. He really likes the upside. He thinks he really has a chance to develop into a starting offensive lineman in this league. That’s always the goal when you draft somebody.” — Head Coach John Harbaugh.
OL Anthony Morris, Tennessee State
(218th overall by Raiders)
The skinny: Morris played in 11 games for TSU as a senior, making 10 starts. TSU’s OL-unit ranked No. 18 in the FCS, giving up only 1.17 sacks per game.
Historically: Myers and Morris become the 120th and 121st NFL Draft choices in school history, which is second-most all-time among FCS schools.
What they’re saying: “I had a lot of talks with Oakland and the Raiders brought me in on a visit a couple of weeks ago, so I hoped they would take me where they did. Oakland GM Reggie McKenzie is going to turn things around there and I am excited to be a part of that.” — Morris.
FREE AGENT SIGNINGS
DT Nigel Crawford-Kinney, St. Augustine
QB Jerry Lovelocke, Prairie View A&M
DT Arthur Miley, Southern
DL Alfy Hill, WSSU; QB Phillip Sims, Winston – Salem State
DB Mike Lee, Fort Valley State
CB De’Ante Saunders, Tennessee State
Green Bay Packers
LB Tavarus Dantzler, Bethune-Cookman; OG Marcus Reed, Fayetteville State
TE Khari Lee, Bowie State; LB Lynden Trail, Norfolk State
New York Jets
DL Davon Walls, Lincoln (Mo.)
DB Keenan Lambert, Norfolk State
WR Milton Williams III, Delaware State
DE Erik Williams, Bethune-Cookman