Sunday, February 25, 2018
Colleges

Deering's speed may endear him to NFL teams

Editor's note: With the NFL draft continuing through today and Saturday, the Times continues to examine the possibilities of several late-round local prospects. Today, we chronicle the chances of former Leto High defensive back Jeremy Deering and former Plant High running back James Wilder Jr.

When all the draft analysts toss out numbers, there is no more recognizable number than a prospect's 40-yard dash time.

It's the appreciable benchmark even the most casual fan takes into account.

Common logic states speed can't be taught.

So the name Jeremy Deering has risen among the so-called draftniks.

"I wrote up on my wall the number 4.4 because that's what I wanted to run," Deering said. "I knew that was possible. But I also thought getting below that wasn't out of the question."

The former Leto High product dazzled scouts by running a blistering 4.33 at his Rutgers pro day in March. Had he run that at the NFL combine, Deering's mark would have tied him for second fastest.

But he didn't get an invite to the combine.

"No, I really wouldn't say disappointed (about not being invited to the combine)," Deering said. "I knew I'd get my chance at pro day. I wasn't worried."

But for as many answers as Deering's speed provides, a host of questions remain. During his time at Rutgers, Deering bounced around from wildcat quarterback to running back to wide receiver to kick returner before switching to safety for his senior season.

"Back (at Leto) I always played multiple positions, so I was kind of used to that," Deering said. "It just required me to do some more studying, some more attention to detail. But I'm a pretty bright guy, so I was able to get it all down pretty well."

Deering said playing all over the field prior to settling in at safety in his final year at Rutgers made the transition to defense easier.

"Since I had done all those things on offense, it helped me with understanding the defensive concepts," he said. "I think I was ahead of most of the defensive backs in that regard. It was just a matter of looking at the game form a different angle."

However the constant position shuffling gave NFL scouts only snippets of tape on Deering rather than multiple years of film at one position. Deering chose his words carefully when asked if he wished if the coaching staff would have kept him at one spot.

"I don't want to comment on that. I just tried to show what I could do at whatever position I played," he said. "I just wanted to be on the field playing. I don't dwell on (switching positions) because I think everything happens for a reason."

The 6-foor-1, 210-pounder is currently ranked as the 28th best free safety according to nfldraftscout.com and if that rating is close to accurate, Deering likely won't hear his name called.

But he also won't have to look far for inspiration. Former Riverview running-back-turned-safety Jahleel Addae went undrafted last year but signed as a free agent with San Diego. By season's end, Addae was starting for the Chargers in the AFC Divisional Playoffs.

"I've had some very positive feedback from the teams I have worked out for," Deering said. All I'm hoping for is that one opportunity, that one shot.

Brandon Wright can be reached at [email protected]

Comments
Louisville must vacate 2013 basketball title, NCAA denies appeal

Louisville must vacate 2013 basketball title, NCAA denies appeal

LOUISVILLE, Ky. ó Louisville must vacate its 2013 menís basketball title following an NCAA appeals panelís decision to uphold sanctions against the menís program in the sex scandal case. The Cardinals will have to vacate 123 victories including the c...
Published: 02/20/18
Center Molly Fransonís value to UT is easily quantifiable

Center Molly Fransonís value to UT is easily quantifiable

TAMPA ó Coaches often point to "intangibles" ó the subtle positive qualities that usually donít show up in the boxscore ó when praising their key players.But University of Tampa womenís basketball coach Tom Jessee has a different definition when desc...
Published: 02/13/18
FSU holds off rally in hard-fought win over Louisville

FSU holds off rally in hard-fought win over Louisville

LOUISVILLE, Ky. ó Terance Mann couldnít mope over two missed free throws that could have sealed Florida Stateís victory. There was still work to do on the other end to make sure Louisville didnít take advantage. The junior guard quickly redeemed hims...
Updated one month ago
No. 23 Florida clobbered at home by Alabama

No. 23 Florida clobbered at home by Alabama

GAINESVILLE ó Mike White hung his head.Floridaís coach scuffed his shoes against the hardwood, screamed into his hands and watched as his team let Saturdayís game slip away.With Alabama on a seven-point run 11 minutes into the second half, the Gators...
Updated one month ago

USF Bulls fall to Memphis

TAMPA ó From its two-point home loss against UCF to its victory at Tulane, USF recently had provided its fan base encouragement in spurts. Similarly, its interior defense against Memphis on Wednesday night also came and went.With 6-foot-3 Tigers guar...
Updated one month ago
Floridaís shooting goes cold in road loss to Georgia

Floridaís shooting goes cold in road loss to Georgia

ATHENS, Ga. ó The repeated misses were bad for No. 23 Florida. The failure to rebound them made the offensive struggles even more painful. Yante Maten scored 20 and Georgia recovered after blowing a halftime lead to beat the Gators 72-60 on Tuesday n...
Updated one month ago

Florida State beats Miami in OT despite 17 Hurricanes 3-pointers

TALLAHASSEE ó Florida Stateís Leonard Hamilton and Miamiís Jim Larranaga both have at least 33 years of college basketball coaching experience under their belts.Both might have experienced a first during their matchup Saturday.FSU and Miami needed a ...
Updated one month ago
Chris Chiozza scores 20 as No. 20 Florida routs Baylor

Chris Chiozza scores 20 as No. 20 Florida routs Baylor

GAINESVILLE ó Florida point guard Chris Chiozza was feeling it, so he went with the flow.A pass-first point guard by nature, Chiozza decided to stay aggressive as a scorer and see what happened.The Gators were glad he did.Chiozza finished the 20th-ra...
Updated one month ago
Pro Bowl to honor UCF for undefeated season

Pro Bowl to honor UCF for undefeated season

ORLANDO ó The NFL plans to recognize UCFís 13-0 season during todayís Pro Bowl at Camping World Stadium.Players have been invited to walk out on the field for a celebration after the first quarter."When we thought about UCF and the amazing season the...
Updated one month ago