Sunday, February 28, 2010

2010 NFL Combine: Top 40 Yard Dash Times from the First Two Days


The 2010 NFL Combine is in full swing out in Indianapolis Indiana, and the top college football players in the nation are doing their best to impress future employers in what can be described as the World's largest interview. So far all the offensive players have gone through their drills. Here we are talking about the receivers, quarterbacks, and runningbacks. Take a look at the top performers so far.



40-Yard Dash Times
Quarterbacks
NameTime
Brown, Jarrett4.54
LeFevour, Dan4.66
Robinson, Zac4.71
Tebow, Tim 4.72
McCoy, Colt 4.79
Lewis, Thaddeus4.84
Skelton, John4.85
Hall, Max4.87

Running Backs
NameTime
Best, Jahvid4.35
Spiller, C.J.4.37
Tate, Ben4.43
Mathews, Ryan4.45
McKnight, Joe4.47
Hardesty, Montario4.49
Starks, James 4.50
Miller, Lonyae4.53
McNeal, Shawnbrey4.56
McCluster, Dexter4.58
Wide Receivers
NameTime
Ford, Jacoby 4.28
Price, Taylor 4.41
Sanders, Emmanuel4.41
Tate, Golden4.42
Banks, Brandon4.43
Williams, Kyle4.43
Easley, Marcus4.46
Roberts, Andre4.46
Long, Brandon4.46
Mitchell, Carlton4.49

Tight Ends

NameTime
Dickerson, Dorin4.40
Graham, Jimmy4.56
Dickson, Ed4.67
Harbor, Clay4.69
Moeaki, Tony4.69
Quarless, Andrew4.69

Offensive Linemen
Campbell, Bruce4.85
Williams, Trent4.88
Newhouse, Marshall5.00
Veldheer, Jared5.09
Smith, Shelley5.11
Capers, Selvish5.14
Jerry, John5.15
Brooks, Dorian5.16
Tennant, Matt5.16
Degeare, Chris5.16

Specialist

NameTime
Holliday, Trindon4.34










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Friday, February 26, 2010

Gatorade Drops Tiger Woods


In a move that should come as no surprise to anyone, sports drink Gatorade has decided to part ways with Tiger Woods. This was confirmed late Friday afternoon by a representative from the PepsiCo Inc.

"We no longer see a role for Tiger in our marketing efforts and have ended our relationship," a Gatorade spokeswoman said. "We wish him all the best."

He would go on to say Gatorade will still be involved with the Tiger Woods Foundation.

This move is hardly shocking. For those who remember the hand writing was on the wall back on December 8, 2009 when Gatorade announced the discontinuation of the Tiger Woods drink line. This came just over a week after the entire scandal broke.

Now it is official. Gatorade is the third major sponsor to drop Tiger Woods. I wonder how they will feel will Powerade signs him for a deal a year from now when Tiger is back on top of his game?

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Scott Van Pelts Drops an F-Bomb on SportsCenter

I hate to rip on a guy who is from the area, but ESPN anchor Scott Van Pelt is in the midst of a horrible week. Earlier this week he was pranked by one of Howard Sterns sidekicks, when he thought he was talking to Brian Westbrook. That was bad, but it's not entirely Scott Van Pelts fault. Whoever is taking the calls in the back up in Bristol has to be a better call screener.

However, on Thursday night Scott Van Pelt made the ultimate on air mistake. Anytime you are doing live television or live radio you have to assume your mic is always 'hot' (turned on). Even when you break for a commercial the on air talent cannot assume the technician in the back has turned their mic off. During last night's Sports Center, Scott Van Pelt forgot that rule. While doing an outro for the commercial break, Van Pelt left his mic on and is caught dropping an F-Bomb just before the break. Rookie mistake, but can happen to anyone.

Needless to say after the prank call, and now this. Scott Van Pelt may be in line for a few days off. I'm sure a long weekend in Dewey Beach is exactly what the broadcaster needs to clear his head.






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Canada Women's Hockey Team Celebrates Gold


It's not often we take time out to celebrate Canada for anything here at Walker Sports. Frankly, because we don't care a lot about our neighbors to the north. However, last night the Canada Women's hockey team stepped up to the plate and knocked off the US Women's team to earn gold at the 2010 Olympics. While that is impressive and great for Canada's hockey program what was most impressive was the way they celebrated the victory.


After the fans left the arena the Canadians came onto the ice to take a team photo with their medals, and they decided to bring the celebration with them. At that point the photographers in attendance got a few clips of the Canada Hockey team swigging beer, popping champagne and enjoying a good time.

Here at Walker Sports we are all about that. To the winner goes the spoils. The Canadian team won the Gold in their home country and they deserved the right to celebrate how they wanted to. However, many feel the team took their actions too far. The IOC cited the issue saying their behavior was not becoming of an Olympic athlete.

We disagree, the IOC did not have a problem with Olympic athletes celebrating. They had a problem with women behaving in this manor. If the Canadian Men's Hockey team wins goal and decides to have a few beers and cigars on the ice, it would be considered heroic. But since it was a group of women who came out and frankly celebrated like men, now everyone is up in arms. It's a shame.

They won, and deserve the right to celebrate, that's part of sports. They were not in the faces of their opponents they were not taunting anyone. Hell it was a basically empty arena, let them have a beer, pop a few bottles and enjoy a cigar. They earned it.


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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Jason Pierre-Paul in a Back Flip Contest

Every year during the combine and draft season we are treated to a YouTube video of some college football stud during some extraordinary physical feat. Last year we saw Jarron Gilbert jumping out of a swimming pool flat footed. This year it is a defensive player once again making headlines. University of South Florida defensive linemen Jason Pierre-Paul is showing off his mobility by competing with teammates in a back flip contest. Yes this is the sort of thing you would expect teenage gymnast to participate in, but it's the new NFL and the athletic ability of some of these guys is priceless. I'm not sure if completing a back flip makes you a better pass rusher, but for Jason Pierre-Paul's sake I hope it helps his draft stock at the very least.



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Daily Erin Andrews: Lindsey Vonn & Julia Mancuso Olympic Fight


The Winter Olympics are still taking place in Vancouver, and the competition on the sky slopes is getting intense. Perhaps the most intense rivalry is forming between two American teammates. Skiers Lindsey Vonn and Julia Mancuso are both on the U.S. Sky team, and the two have a rivalry that appears to be one for the ages. Many are saying Mancuso's anger toward Vonn stems from the attention Lindsey Vonn is garnering for herself in the mainstream. After checking out some pictures of Julia Mancuso it's our opinion that she has a legit argument. There is no reason Julia Mancuso should not be on the cover of magazines.




Check out Lindsey Vonn and Julia Mancuso and judge for yourself.




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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Top Offensive Line Prospects in the NFL Draft


As usual the offensive linemen are the overlooked bunch on the field. This is definitely evident at the NFL Combine. It's hard to duplicate what these guys do with simple drills. They look horrible when running the 40 yard dash, and even on the Bench Press they can be outdone by a linebacker or a powerful defensive linemen. Nonetheless, drafting a quality offensive lineman can change the future of an NFL franchise. Here are this year's top offensive linemen entering the NFL Combine.

1) Russell Okung Oklahoma State: Like every year, the top offensive lineman in the draft is up for debate. However, right now Russell Okung is proving to be the most polished lineman available. He has great footwork and the versatility to step in at right tackle and anchor any offensive line.

2) Mike Iupati Idaho: This is one big bad nasty guard. Mike Iupati has the ability to be a throwback style player. Quick enough to be a great pulling guard and a mean streak in him that enables him to get down field and finish off blocks.

3) Trent Williams Oklahoma:
Trent Williams may be the quickest offensive lineman in this year's NFL combine. The knock on him would be at 290 pounds he is a bit undersized. His footwork will be all important during the Combine. If he can prove he has exceptional football and can put himself in the right position then scouts will be able to forget what he lacks in size.

4) Anthony Davis Rutgers: It was not too long ago that Anthony Davis was at the top of many draft boards. His performance during practices at the Senior Bowl have caused him to fall. Mainly it was his footwork. Anthony Davis had trouble adjusting and changing directions. This made him a liability against many of the speed rushers he faced.

5) Vladimir Ducasse Massachusetts: Vladimir may have the most to gain from this year's combine. Because he played at UMass the questions are obvious about how he will perform against elite competition. He needs to show he can keep up with the top defensive players available, and prove he belongs on an NFL roster. A good run at the combine and Vladimir can find himself climbing multiple draft boards.


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Top RB Prospects in the NFL Draft


All the guys are in Indianapolis and beginning the interview and testing process for the 2010 NFL Combine. The physical test will get underway this weekend. Before the athletes take the field, we are still handing out some pre-rankings. This time we are talking about the top running backs available in this year's NFL Combine.

C.J. Spiller Clemson: There is no doubt that Spiller is the top running back available in this year's draft. A few injuries during the mid season cost him the chance at a Heisman, but that has only made him more focused. Spiller has a solid body on him at 195 pounds he can run the ball between the tackles. He should run around the 4.3 second 40 yard dash time displaying he has the speed to be a game breaker. Another great addition is the fact that Spiller can step in on kickoffs and special teams.

Jonathan Dwyer Georgia Tech: Jonathan Dwyer is a big bruising back who carried the ball plenty of times last year in Georgia Tech's option offense. At 235 pounds he can go head on with most linebackers, and defensive backs want no part of him. He's proven to be extremely durable which means he could become an every down back for a NFL team in need. He will need to prove his speed in the 40 yard dash.

Ryan Mathews Fresno St: Chances are you haven't seen Ryan Mathews play, but trust me this kid is a work horse. At 220 pounds he is a powerful back. The biggest issue for Ryan Mathews will be proving he has put the injuries behind him. In addition his speed in the 40 could hurt him. There's a legit chance Ryan Mathews fails to run a sub 4.5 second 40.

Toby Gerhart Standford: Toby Gerhart shook up the world when he burst onto the stage late in 2009. Chances are Gerhart will prove to be the most powerful back in the draft. He will blow away coaches with his interviews and test scores. If Gerhart can put together some solid times in his speed test, Gerhart could see himself moving up the draft board.

Jahvid Best California: Last year this time, Jahvid Best was the Walker Sports top candidate for the Heisman Trophy. Unfortunately Cal did not pan out as a team, and injuries sidelined Best for the majority of the season. Jahvid Best will rival C.J. Spiller for fastest 40 time. He should test off the charts for all his physical test. The medical exams will be key for Best. He needs to prove he has moved beyond his concussion and neck injuries, and show he has the durability to be a prime time NFL back.

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Scott Van Pelt Gets a Prank Call from Captain Shanks

Once again an ESPN anchor is the victim of a prank call courtesy of The Howard Stern Show. Scott Van Pelt a long time ESPN anchor was hosting Sports Center last night, and he thought for sure he had an exclusive interview with recently released running back Brian Westbrook. Sadly, the only thing Van Pelt received was a prank call and some egg on his face.

Check out this prank call.






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Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Top WR Prospects in the NFL Draft


Continuing our preview of the top prospects available, we are looking at the receiver pool avail in this year's draft. As of right now, there are only a couple of guys who are true first round picks. However, as we all know a strong showing at the Combine could elevate any of these five guys into the first round. With Cincinnati, Chicago, Baltimore in the midst of looking for receivers there are plenty of available jobs for young receivers.


1) Dez Bryant Oklahoma State:
He may have sat out all of last season thanks to Dion Sanders, but that does not eliminate the fact that Dez Bryant can flat out play. Any rust he may have can be knocked off during training camp in the summer. He has the perfect size, great hands and despite the mishap last season, he has a great head on his shoulders. Bryant could go in the top ten.

2) Golden Tate Notre Dame:
Smaller than Dez Bryant but plenty of speed, and not afraid to go over the middle. Really the only thing keeping Tate from jumping to the top of this chart is his height at 5'11 it concerns some coaches. Shorter receivers have trouble catching high balls especially with so many tall CB's in the league.

3) Damian Williams USC: Williams has the most to gain from this year's combine. He has a solid build and good hands. In college he averaged 14.2 yards a punt return which shows he is versatile and should also translate into a good time in the shuttle run. The bottom line for Damian Williams is he needs to run a sub 4.5 second 40 yard dash and finish near or at the top of his groups for his physical test. If he can do that, the interviews will take care of himself and Williams can find himself flying up draft boards.

4) Brandon LaFell LSU:
For LeFell he will need to show great explosion. While 40 time should be fine, but the shuttle runs, and route running will come into question. Brandon LeFell has the ability to pass Damian Williams on this list, but cracking the top two would be very difficult.

5) Mardy Gilyard Cincinnati: Cincinnati had one high powered offense, while Tony Pike may have been the man tossing the ball around, who do you think was catching it? Gilyard is an interesting character, he possess great speed and good hands. However, the question remains was he a product of the Cincinnati system? If he can show good hands and route running ability at the Combine Mardy Gilyard will be able to secure his place in the mid-second round.


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Top QB Prospects in The NFL Draft


The NFL Combine is set to kick off in just a few days, and dozens of college football players and hundreds of scouts will flock to Indianapolis to find out who will be the next big thing in the NFL. The Combine has been known to make or break draft stocks, and guys have seen millions go down the drain thanks to a poor outing. Before the first 40 yard dash is run in Indy, check out our big boards and see how we are ranking guys. Let's start with the quarterbacks.


1) Sam Bradford Oklahoma
: The one time Heisman Trophy winner has the obvious shoulder issues to deal with. They sidelined him during his junior year, and until he learns to take a fall, they will continue to be an issue. That being said, Bradford is 6'5 just under 200 pounds and he has all the tools. Even though he will not throw at the Combine, his draft stock should be secure, and frankly if the shoulder is solid it will be difficult for anyone to pass him as the top quarterback available.

2) Jimmy Clausen Notre Dame: Clausen had an up and down career while attending Notre Dame, that could be attributed to any number of things that took place around him and the program. At the end of the day, Clausen got better over his three years in South Bend. That shows he's capable of learning and advancing his skills. The Washington Redskins have already mentioned Jimmy Clausen multiple times as being a quarterback for the future. Clausen has a big time arm, and is capable of making the deep throw. Another asset for him is he has three years in a pro style system as a result of playing for Charlie Weis.

3) Tony Pike Cincinnati:
Without a doubt Tony Pike has the most to gain from this years Combine. He will measure out at just over 6'5 making him the tallest quarterback available, an instant boast for his draft stock. He will also run a sub 5.0 40 yard dash time, and display great agility in shuttle run. Plainly put Tony Pike is a big mobile quarterback. With Clausen and Bradford not throwing in Indianapolis, Tony Pike becomes the top passer at the Combine. If he can display how accurate his arm really is (48 tds to 17 picks in 2 years) Tony Pike could find his draft stock rising in the same manor Joe Flacco did a few years back.

4) Dan LeFevour Central Michigan: The Central Michigan quarterback threw bombs and touchdown. Dan LeFevour broke plenty of records while playing at Central Michigan. At 6'3 he's slightly bigger than what many thought, which is good for him. The biggest question surround LeFevour is his footwork. Like many quarterbacks now days LeFevour played in a spread offense in college and took the majority of his snaps coming out of the shotgun. If will need to prove he can accurately read a defense when dropping from under center.

5) Tim Tebow Florida:
No one has been talked about more before stepping foot into the arena in Indianapolis than Tim Tebow. Yesterday we showed video of Tebow's reworked throwing motion, this could be a big step in helping Tebow to jump up GM's draft boards. However, he will not throw in Indianapolis. He will continue to work on his new motion and debut his new throwing motion at his pro day in Gainsville. In the end, Tim Tebow is the best overall athlete at the quarterback position. He is the most decorated college football player ever. If he can master this new throwing motion and adjust to throwing from under center, then the sky is the limit for how high his draft stock can soar.




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Michael Vick to Pose for Playgirl?


Mike Vick is still under contract to the Philadelphia Eagles, but he is looking to ink a new deal with a team any day now to get him back in the starting lineup of a NFL team. According to sources over at the National Football Post, Mike Vick does have a new contract offer on the table. However, I'm not sure this is the exact type of offer he was hoping for.

Playgirl magazine has made Mike Vick what they hope will be a very lucrative offer, both financially and PR wise. The magazine has gone on record stating they will donate $1 million dollars to PETA if the Philadelphia Eagles star is willing to take it off for one of their upcoming issues.

"I sent the request to Michael Vick on Wednesday," Daniel Nardicio, a Playgirl spokesman, told Life & Style. "But we haven't heard back yet.

"I figured he paid back society for dog fighting, but what about the animals? This way he could donate a large sum to PETA and all he'd have to do is pose for the magazine! It's kind of a win-win situation."

Tony Gonzalez and his wife striped down for PETA last year as part of their "We'd rather go naked than wear fur" campaign. However, taking it off for Playgirl would be a bit different. While Michael Vick still needs all the PR help he can get, taking it off for Playgirl would not be the type of image rehab he needs. While Vick has taken a lot of steps in the right direction to rebuild his image, it seems like he is straying from the path as of late. First a reality television deal, and now this possibility, not smart moves. I have to wonder what Tony Dungy would think about this whole situation?

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Monday, February 22, 2010

Tim Tebow Reworks Throwing Motion

The NFL Combine is just a few days away. With the 'Boy Name Suh' locked up as the overall first pick in the pending draft, the focus of all the drama in Indianapolis moves to Tim Tebow. The former Florida Gator quarterback may be the most talked about non first round draft pick in NFL history. Of course all the controversy surrounds can Tebow play quarterback in the NFL?

After watching him in preparation for the Senior Bowl the overwhelming answer was no. Tebow struggled when taking snaps from under center, his footwork was horrible, and that long throwing motion simply will not cut it in today's NFL. However, it's not all gloom and doom for Tim Tebow. Not if you ask ESPN's Adam Schefter, who caught up with the former Heisman Trophy winner.




From the video it appears that Tim Tebow is making solid strides in adjusting his throwing motion. Now it's highly unlikely these adjustments will rocket him into the first round of the draft, but it could place him in the top of the second round, thus taking him away from relegation in the third round.



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USA Sevens In Las Vegas- The Fans Were Epic


Continuing with our theme of recapping the USA Sevens we are taking a look at the fans who were in attendance for this event. We spent the bulk of the day on Saturday out in the fan zone, talking with our friends from UR7s.com, listening to the band and enjoying the beers available in the multiple beer garden. However, on Sunday we were all business, as we watching the USA Eagles take the field and handle their business on the pitch. Without a doubt the highlight of the day came from hanging with the New Zealand fans, and a couple of All Blacks. We had a great vantage point for the pitch, and we got to meet some amazing people.

Once again, a special thanks to Sharon Lovell for these amazing images she snapped during the USA Sevens Tournament.




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