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Now step back and take off the heels ...

Not sure why I always find it fascinating when athletes are measured to the nearest quarter-inch at a pro combine, but scanning those numbers always piques my curiosity. We know that roster heights, as in football, are the little white lies of sports, something we use and question at the same time.

So for two years, we've written that USF's Kentrell Gransberry was 6-foot-9, 270 pounds, with the understanding that both measurements might be a little off. has all the numbers for the participants in last week's pre-draft camp in Orlando, which has KG listed as 6 feet, 7.75 inches and 290 pounds.

The first number isn't that disconcerting -- I think your typical athlete probably gains an inch on a roster. The measurements also list percent body fat (I shudder to think what my number might be) and Gransberry had the highest percent at the combine at 17.4 percent, one of 12 players to list over 10 percent. Again, nobody reading this ever confused Gransberry with McHugh Mattis.

The same site also has combine results from the camp. Gransberry finished in the top 10 in the bench press, getting 18 reps at 185 pounds -- West Virginia's Joe Alexander finished second with 24. Gransberry's vertical leap of 27.5 inches isn't great, but it's somehow a half-inch better than Keith Brumbaugh, who weighs 100 pounds less. Gransberry was faster than fellow big men Brook Lopez and David Padgett in agility drills, and had a quicker sprint time than Georgetown's Patrick Ewing Jr.

Most amusing, however, is that the camp lists two heights for each player -- with and without shoes -- as if NBA players made a habit of playing barefoot. There's a strange disparity in how thick those shoes are, with some adding less than an inch. Alabama's Richard Hendrix gets my Michael Dukakis Award with an outstanding 2-inch bump with his lifts, er, shoes on. UCLA's Kevin Love picked up 1.75 inches.

Anyway, just wanted to share. It's not often we get to rank a draft class by the thickness of their soles. Carry on ...

[Last modified: Thursday, May 27, 2010 12:27pm]


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