USF pro day: Deatrick Nichols makes fast work of 40

The versatile defensive back's 40-yard dash time was believed to hover in the 4.3-second range
Former USF defensive end Mike Love participates in a blocking-dummy drill during the Bulls' pro day. (Octavio Jones, Times)
Former USF defensive end Mike Love participates in a blocking-dummy drill during the Bulls' pro day. (Octavio Jones, Times)
Published March 26, 2018|Updated March 27, 2018

While bench-press reps and broad jump measurements were announced for all to document at USF's pro day Monday, 40-yard dash times mostly remained a secret between scouts and their stopwatches.

But if the howls and hoots (from teammates) elicited by Deatrick Nichols' 40 effort were any sign, the versatile Bulls defensive back partially stole Monday's three-hour showcase.

Unofficial times for Nichols ranged from 4.32 to 4.36 seconds, believed to be the fastest registered Monday before representatives from 30 NFL teams and two Canadian Football League clubs. He also had a 37-inch vertical leap and did 15 reps of 225 pounds on the bench.

"I think I was complete like, solid," Nichols said. "So I'm happy with everything I did. I just thank God for it."

Nichols will participate in local pre-draft workouts next month for the Bucs and Dolphins, according to his agent, Aston Wilson. Some more private workouts could be forthcoming after Monday.

"While I was training I got kind of bored man, just waiting on this day," said Nichols, a two-time first-team All-American Athletic Conference pick who successfully transitioned from cornerback to nickel back as a senior. "But it was all worth the wait."

Related: Photo gallery: sights from USF's pro day

EYES ON THE LINE: The defensive line position drills seemed especially extensive, with Mike Love, Bruce Hector and Deadrin Senat receiving what appeared to be intense observation.

Prior to that, Hector and Love did 26 and 24 reps, respectively, on the bench press; while Love managed a 10-foot, 1-inch broad jump. Senat, who did 35 bench reps at the NFL scouting combine, didn't lift Monday.

"A lot (of scouts) got my number and said they'll be calling me soon and stuff," said Love, a Countryside High alumnus whose 11 tackles for loss in 2017 included 5.5 sacks.

"I think what they really liked was that I can do both linebacker and defensive lineman. They said I have pretty good hips and I showed my athleticism pretty good."

MCGOUGH TO MARQUEZ: One of the more bizarre images Monday arrived during the passing drills, when Bulls WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling took his throws from draft-eligible FIU QB (and former Gaither High standout) Alex McGough.

The two have known each other since high school, and have been working out together recently (McGough trains with local quarterbacks coach John Kaleo). Valdes-Scantling had no drops Monday, bobbling one intermediate throw near the sideline before securing possession as he hit the ground.

"I think I did pretty well," Valdes-Scantling said. "I caught everything, it was a good day. The quarterback threw some great balls to me, and it was really good."

Valdes-Scantling bypassed the 40-yard dash after a blistering effort (4.37) at the NFL scouting combine.

ODDS AND ENDS: Former Bulls QB B.J. Daniels participated Monday, working out at both receiver and quarterback. … RB Darius Tice did 27 reps of 225 pounds on the bench. … WR A.J. Legree, who missed the 2017 season with a torn ACL, had a 35-inch vertical leap. … Former Bulls WR Andre Davis, whose 153 receptions remains the USF career record, observed pro day but didn't participate. Davis said he has been invited to Saskatchewan's preseason camp at IMG Academy in Bradenton starting April 21.