Several Bulls shine at pro day
The conviviality of homecoming and sternness of a job interview converged Monday at USF as 14 former Bulls had a final organized workout on their college turf before an audience including peers, parents and prospective employers.
Based on the raw data collected, not to mention a smattering of eye tests, a handful of players likely will get a follow-up call.
Offensive linemen Brynjar Gudmundsson and Thor Jozwiak, LB Tashon Whitehurst and even backup QB Steven Bench were among those posting solid numbers at USF's annual pro day. The event attracted scouts from at least 17 NFL clubs and several Canadian Football League representatives.
"I thought I did really well," said Jozwiak, who recorded a stunning 30-inch vertical leap minutes after weighing in at 319 pounds.
"The goal is to make it into camp and prove yourself there, but it was a ball being out here with everyone again and participating in our last team function as a USF Bull, so definitely a fun experience."
Jozwiak and Gudmundsson -- who started all 13 games last season at left guard and center, respectively -- both measured in slightly above 6-foot-3, with Gudmundsson 18 pounds lighter. Gudmundsson's 26 reps of 225 pounds on the bench press -- three more than Jozwiak -- led all participants, and he finished a half-inch better on the vertical.
Gudmundsson was clocked in the 40-yard dash in 5.1 seconds, Jozwiak 5.19.
"My objective is to make it into a camp drafted or undrafted," said Jozwiak, married last month. "I just want to make it into a camp and prove...that I can play this game at the next level."
Whitehurst, who notched 105 career tackles while playing at virtually every linebacker spot, brandished strength (22 reps on the bench), agility (35 1/2-inch vertical) and speed (4.5 in the 40) hardly befitting a player who made only six collegiate starts. Similarly, Bench (four career starts) posted sparkling numbers in the vertical (35 1/2 inches) and 40 (4.55) while displaying velocity and precision in his position work.
Catching most of Bench's throws was 245-pound TE Sean Price, who appeared fully recovered from the partial PCL tear sustained during the Miami Beach Bowl in late December. Price ran a 4.7 40, leaped 30 inches and benched 22 reps of 225.
"To come out here and not feel it at all definitely gave me a lot of motivation throughout the whole pro day," Price said. "So I felt pretty good about it."
Less fortunate physically was S Jamie Byrd, whose nagging sore hamstring kept him out of all drills except the bench press (11 reps). Byrd said he is among a handful of Monday participants invited to the Buccaneers' local-players workout next month.
"It's just like sitting out of a game," the Pasco High alumnus said. "It's killin' me."
Two seniors from the Bulls' 2014 squad, TE Mike McFarland and P Mattias Ciabatti, also participated, with McFarland (6-6, 262) running the 40 in 4.6 and doing 18 reps on the bench.
A Blake High alumnus who went undrafted last season, McFarland spent time in the Texans training camp before suffering a high-ankle sprain. He received a one-week injury settlement in October after being targeted in an attempted extortion scheme.
Also working out was former Tampa Catholic 3,900-yard rusher Hank McCloud, who finished his college career at Furman as the Paladins' No. 10 all-time rusher (2,395 yards). McCloud did 14 reps of 225 pounds and notched a 30 1/2-inch vertical.
Pro Day Results
A few of the results posted at USF's pro day Monday afternoon
Player Pos Ht/Wt Bench Vertical 40-yard dash
Steven Bench QB 6-1/206 DNP 35 1/2 4.55
Zack Bullock DE/LB 6-3/219 13 33 4.6
Brynjar Gudmundsson OL 6-3/301 26 30 1/2 5.1
Thor Jozwiak OL 6-3/319 23 30 5.19
Eric Lee DE 6-3/254 24 26 1/2 4.56
Marlon Pope TE 6-3/259 10 n/a 4.88
Sean Price TE 6-2/245 22 30 4.7
Tashon Whitehurst LB 6-2/210 22 35 1/2 4.5
* Heights rounded off to nearest inch