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MKRISTO BRUCE Defensive End Washington State University Cougars #92 6:05.6-268 Renton, Wash. Liberty High
Washington State's aggressive scheme has produced several statistical monsters over the past decade. Bruce looks the part physically and racks up plenty of production, but is a bit of a product of the system and will be drafted considerably lower than his size or statistics would seem to warrant.
He led the Cougars with 11.0 sacks and 16 tackles for loss in 2006. At the East-West Shrine Game in Houston, he displayed a good burst off the edge in practice, but wasn't able to turn that into an impressive performance in the game itself.
Positives: Productive collegiate defensive end who has improved throughout his career. Has rare size for the position. Better pass rusher than he is a natural football player. Gets an advantage on the offensive tackle and can capitalize with good short-area quickness and strength in his tackling.
Negatives: Lacks quickness off the snap and acceleration around the offensive tackle. Isn't explosive and makes too many plays down the field. Despite size, Bruce isn't a particularly physical defender and can be knocked off the line of scrimmage.
Second Team AP All-American in 2006...Walter Camp Football Foundation Second Team All-American in 2006...Invited to the East-West Shrine game in Houston following his senior season...Pac-10 second team and ESPN.com All-Pac-10 first team in 2005.
2006 AP All-American Second Team, Bruce capped his senior season by leading the Cougars with 11.0 sacks and 16.0 tackles for loss, to go with 67 tackles, two fumble recoveries and an interception. Bruce tied a Pac-10 record with five sacks at Stanford, earning him Pacific-10 Conference Defensive Player of the Week honors, and was the national leader in that category the following three weeks.
In addition to his all-conference honors, Bruce received national acclaim by being named a finalist for the Ted Hendricks Award and a semifinalist for the Chuck Bednarik Award (top defensive player), Rotary Lombardi Award (top defensive player) and Lott Trophy (top defensive player), along with his inclusion on the Bronko Nagurski Watch List. Bruce concluded his WSU career third on the career sacks list with 29.5 and tied for second in tackles-for-loss with 44.5.
Games - 11...Starts - 11...earned the following four weekly team awards: Cougar Claw Defense - Idaho/Oregon; Pac-10 Defensive POW nominee - Grambling State/Stanford. Special Teams: Punt, KO Return...finished the season fourth in tackles with 67 and led the team in TFL (15), sacks (10) and fumbles recovered (2)...tied for team lead with three forced fumbles...Pacific-10 Conference second team and ESPN.com All-Pac-10 first team...Ted Hendricks Award candidate...WSU's Defensive MVP, Leon Bender Defensive Lineman of the Year Award...made a career-best 11 tackles against Stanford, along with two sacks and three tackles for loss...outstanding game against Oregon with nine tackles, including two sacks and 3.5 TFLs...also forced a fumble and recovered a fumble against the Ducks...tied for 7th on WSU's single season sack list and tied for 10th in TFLs.
Games - 11...Starts - 11...earned the following weekly team awards: Cougar Claw Defense - Oregon...finished the year ranked tied for 8th in sacks with 0.59/game and 5th in fumbles recovered at 0.27/game...moved into the starting lineup in the spring...started the season with six tackles at New Mexico and also had six against Oregon, including two sacks, a fumble caused and a fumble recovered...had five tackles at Arizona with two TFLs...recovered a fumble against Colorado...against Stanford made four tackles, including one sack and two TFL's...the next week at Oregon State had six tackles with one TFL...made a career-high nine tackles against USC, with two TFLs...also shared one sack...the next week at UCLA also had nine tackles, made one sack and recovered one Bruin fumble...participated in at least one TFL in all but the Colorado game and had sacks in eight games.
Games - 13...Starts - 0...only tackle in first college game a 10-yard sack against Idaho...recovered a fumble and had two tackles at Colorado...single tackles against Oregon, Arizona, Stanford, Oregon State and UCLA...only tackle at Stanford a 14-yard sack...one tackle against Texas in the Holiday Bowl...earned the following weekly team awards: Big Hit - Oregon. Special Teams: KO returns.
Redshirt season...earned defensive scout of the week honors leading up to Idaho and Washington games.
2006: Spent two days in the hospital the week before the Scouting Combine in February with a stomach virus.
Combine: 5.12 in the 40-yard dash...29-inch vertical jump...8'10" broad jump...4.80 20-yard shuttle...7.38 three-cone drill.
Graduated from Liberty High 2002...Earned eight letters competing in basketball and track, along with football, where his coach was Steve Valach...as a junior, he started at quarterback and linebacker, where he was named honorable mention All-Kingco...As a senior, he was named a Seattle Times Red Chip prospect...Team finished 4-5 overall and 4-5 in the KingCo Conference...All-league first-team pick as a linebacker and the second-team quarterback...Passed for 718 yards and seven touchdowns while rushing for 602 yards and six touchdowns...Nominated to play in All-State game...Selected Eastside Journal athlete of the week after leading Liberty to a 17-7 victory over No. 7 Newport.
Mkristo Bruce...Born October 16, 1984...Mother is Julianne Bruce...Has three brothers, Mtume, Sheadrah, and Julian, and four sisters, Malaika, Maisha, Timia, and Heaven.