by Pigskin Paul Guillemette
I almost forgot to relate to you, what I felt, was one of the first newsworthy events of Senior Bowl week. Maybe it’s fitting to wrap up our coverage with the first thing that happened at the beginning of the player weigh-in. For the second year in a row Game Director PHIL SAVAGE informed the gathering, primarily made up of NFL personnel people, of what and why players were missing from Senior Bowl activities.
His first group of names was a list of 6 players who officially contacted the Senior Bowl to decline the invitation to the game for various, non-injury reasons. They were…
A.J. CANN/OG/SOUTH CAROLINA
As it turns out with MARIOTA there was a post Bowl injury involved. In the case of MORSE my comment is, ‘What was he thinking?’
Phil’s second list was of players who had accepted originally, but were still not recovered from in-season injuries. They were…
Nest was a list of players, who again, had originally committed to the game but had to withdraw because of Bowl Game related injuries. They all notified the Senior Bowl through proper channels that they would not be in Mobile. They were…
MICHAEL BENNETT/DT/OHIO STATE
ANDY GALLIK/OC/BOSTON COLLEGE
JEFF HEUERMAN/TE/OHIO STATE
NICK O’LEARY/TE/FLORIDA STATE
CEDRIC OGBUEHI/OT/TEXAS A&M
COREY ROBINSON/OT/SOUTH CAROLINA
OGBUEHI actually broke a leg in performance camp, and ROBINSON recently underwent a medical procedure (unspecified) which took them out of action.
And then there was the Dirty List of players who had accepted invitations to come, but failed to show without informing Senior Bowl staff of their intentions to not attend. SAVAGE literally asked the NFL people in attendance to confront this lack of personal responsibility to the players and their representatives when the opportunity presented itself during Draft related contacts over the coming months. PHIL SAVAGE is normally a very calm, Christian man, but the behavior of these players and their reps clearly irritated him greatly. So here is the Dirty List of players who played by their own rules in this matter…
CAM ERVING/C/T/FLORIDA STATE
RASHAD GREENE/WR/FLORIDA STATE
KEVIN JOHNSON/CB/WAKE FOREST
JOSUE MATIAS/OG/FLORIDA STATE
KEVIN WHITE/WR/WEST VIRGINIA
Without editorializing too much, I find it interesting that 3 of the 9 on this list are Seminoles. Another black mark next to the name of one of the most out-of-control college football programs in the nation, in this man’s opinion.
So there you have it. Arguably 28 of the top seniors in the country who could not/would not venture to show what they could do under NFL coaching supervision. Add these names to ineligible underclassmen and you can clearly see why this year’s Senior Bowl did not have a large number of potential First Rounders in this year’s NFL Draft in uniform last week.
Just thought you should have this information to consider.