05/21/13 - Corey Linsley, rSr/2014, Ohio State, 6-2, 298 (DS#9 C) 2013 RIMINGTON TROPHY WATCH LIST: Corey Linsley, Ohio State...One of four returning starters along the offensive line for Ohio State, Linsely successfully made the transition from offensive guard/tackle to center in the spring of 2012. He became one of the Buckeyes most improved players and preceded to start all 12 games at center last season for the undefeated Buckeyes. He was named honorable mention all-Big Ten Conference by both the conference coaches and media.
Linsley helped the Buckeyes' offense to a Big Ten-best 37.2 points per game and to 242.2 rushing yards per game (2nd in the Big Ten and 10th nationally). The team also scored a team 34-year best 37 rushing touchdowns last year. Linsley is a three-year letterwinner who has played in 28 games for the Buckeyes. - Ohio State football
05/21/13 - Betim Bujari, rJr/2015, Rutgers, 6-4, 290 (DS#999 C) 2013 RIMINGTON TROPHY WATCH LIST: Betim Bujari, Rutgers...Bujari completed his first full year as the starting center in 2012. He was part of an offensive line that paved the way for a 1,000-yard rusher and allowed the eighth-fewest sacks in the nation. - Rutgers football
05/21/13 - Samuel Ukwuachu, rSo/2016, Boise State, 6-3, 220 (DS#999 DE) Former Boise State defensive end Sam Ukwuachu told Sic'emSports.com on Monday that he plans to transfer to Baylor. "It's a done deal, and I'm reporting June 3,'' he said in the report. "Baylor was my best option. It's close to home. It's a good program. (Boise St. coach Chris Petersen) really helped me to [decide] where I wanted to go. Things just didn't work out up there.'' Ukwuachu was dismissed from the Boise State program two weeks ago for undisclosed reasons. He also considered transferring to Florida and Utah.
The 6-foot-4, 222-pounder from Pearland, Texas, was a freshman All-American for the Broncos in 2012, starting 12 games and notching seven tackles for loss and 4 1/2 sacks. It's possible that Ukwuachu could play this fall if the NCAA grants a hardship waiver on his behalf. Othwerise, he'll sit out this coming season and have two years of eligibility remaining. - Chris Huston, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Russell Bodine, rJr/2015, North Carolina, 6-3, 305 (DS#1 C) 2013 RIMINGTON TROPHY WATCH LIST: Russell Bodine, North Carolina...Bodine helped lead a UNC offense which set school records in total points (487) and points per game (40.8) in 2012, as the Tar Heels finished eighth nationally in scoring offense. The Scottsville, Va., junior had a standout season in his first year as a full-time starter.
The ACC was one of three conferences with five nominees, including the Pac-12 Conference and the Mountain West Conference. Only the Southeastern Conference (9) had more selected to the 2013 Spring Watch List. - North Carolina football
05/21/13 - David Andrews, Jr/2015, Georgia, 6-2, 295 (DS#2 C) 2013 RIMINGTON TROPHY WATCH LIST: David Andrews, Georgia...Starting all 14 games at center in 2012, Jones anchored an offensive line that enabled the Bulldogs to score a school record 529 points, which equaled a school record 37.8 points per game. The Bulldogs posted only the third 12-win season in Georgia history thanks to the offensive output.
Andrews received the Leon Farmer Award for dedication to the strength and conditioning program and the Coaches' Leadership Award last year. He was named the SEC Offensive Lineman of the Week following the Auburn game in 2012 after grading out at 88 percent with six "dominator" blocks and three knockdowns. - Georgia football
05/21/13 - Brandon Vitabile, rJr/2015, Northwestern, 6-3, 300 (DS#4 C) 2013 RIMINGTON TROPHY WATCH LIST: Brandon Vitabile, Northwestern...In 2012, Vitabile was a key component of an offensive line that ranked No. 1 in the Big Ten in fewest sacks allowed (1.23 per game) and led the way for a rushing attack that ranked fourth in the conference with 225.6 ground yards per contest.
He also was recognized by the NU coaching staff as the team's Offensive Player of the Game following a win over Illinois and the Offensive Big Playmaker after a victory at Minnesota. A member of the 2013 Leadership Council, Vitabile is joined by tackle Jack Konopka as returning members of the offensive line unit in 2013. Vitabile is one of 17 returning players from the 2012 preseason watch list and one of 44 total candidates from across the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS). - Northwestern football
05/21/13 - Teddy Bridgewater, Jr/2015, Louisville, 6-3, 220 (DS#1 QB) Teddy Bridgewater doesn't ask for much. So when he told University of Louisville football coach Charlie Strong and offensive coordinator Shawn Watson that he wanted to ask something of them, they listened. What he asked for was a bit of a surprise. Bridgewater has been billed as a Heisman Trophy candidate since the end of last season, when he closed out with a game-winning performance against Rutgers despite having a broken wrist and a sprained ankle, then followed that up with a big-time performance against Florida to lead the Cardinals to a Sugar Bowl victory.
But sitting with Strong and Watson, Bridgewater asked that the school not mount a Heisman Trophy campaign for him, but instead have any emphasis or publicity include the team as whole. That's right. Bridgewater gave a stiff arm to the stiff arm trophy, or at least, to the surrounding hype. And Strong says he will respect his player's wishes. "We're going to let Teddy go and play," Strong said. "Teddy doesn't want to let people down and he doesn't want all of the attention. He wants to win first and foremost." - WDRB.com
05/21/13 - Jay Prosch, rSr/2014, Auburn, 6-0, 247 (DS#2 FB) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 20. Jay Prosch, Auburn, FB: A holdover from last year's Freaks list, the 6-0, 256-pound fullback is actually quite lean, according to Tiger strength coach Ryan Russell, who says Prosch has just 5.9 percent body fat. Prosch also has good speed for a fullback, having clocked a 4.59 40. "Jay is the ultimate guy to have in a strength program. He's highly self-motivated and a great positive motivator to his teammates," said Russell. "I've never seen anybody else quite like him." - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Mark Jackson, Sr/2014, Texas-El Paso, 5-10, 170 (DS#999 WR) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 19. Mark Jackson, UTEP, WR: A transfer from Texas, the 5-10, 170-pound Jackson is expected to return to the football field after starring for the Longhorns track team for much of his college career. Jackson was the Big 12's triple jump champion last year and this spring has also proven to be one of the nation's better long jumpers while competing for the Miners. His speed should help UTEP's offense in the fall. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - James Gayle, rSr/2014, Virginia Tech, 6-4, 268 (DS#5 DE) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 18. James Gayle, Va. Tech, DE: One of the ACC's best defensive ends, the 269-pound Gayle has vertical jumped 39.5 inches to go with a 400-pound bench press and a 4.6 second clocking in the 40 this past spring. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - James Wilder Jr., Jr/2015, Florida State, 6-1, 226 (DS#4 RB) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 17. James Wilder, FSU, RB: The Noles had a few other viable candidates to make this list (LB Christian Jones and DT Timmy Jernigan) each warranted consideration, but we'll go with the 233-pound back, who measured in with 4.9 percent body fat. Wilder also runs in the 4.5s, vertical jumps over 36 inches and bench presses 405 pounds. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Carl Bradford, rJr/2015, Arizona State, 6-1, 241 (DS#7 OLB) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 16. Carl Bradford, ASU, LB: One of the Pac-12's top playmakers is also one of its biggest Freaks. On the field, the 6-1, 241-pounder stood out by piling up 11.5 sacks and 20.5 tackles for a loss last season. Off the field, Bradford is a beast in the weight room, squatting 641 pounds and power cleaning 385 to go with a team-best 10-2 broad jump. He also vertical jumps 35.5 inches. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Colt Lyerla, Jr/2015, Oregon, 6-5, 246 (DS#2 TE) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 15. Colt Lyerla, Oregon, TE-RB: When Chip Kelly lined up the 6-5, 250-pounder at running back it was quite a sight. Lyerla was quite the weapon with surprising wheels for a guy that size, especially when it comes to his hops. He had vertical jumped 35 inches (second-best all-time among Oregon tight ends) and touched a team-best 11-3 in the jump reach. But gets him a spot on this year's Freaks List. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - George Atkinson III, Jr/2015, Notre Dame, 6-1, 210 (DS#6 RB) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 14. George Atkinson III, Notre Dame, RB-KR: The reserve Irish running back has good size at 215 pounds to go with blazing speed. Last year, he ran a 10.36 100-meter dash at the Big East track championships. Even though it was a wind-aided time, it wasn't much over the legal-limit and shows a gear Notre Dame football fans hadn't seen much of in a few years. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Donte Moncrief, Jr/2015, Mississippi, 6-2, 224 (DS#12 WR) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 13. Donte Moncrief, Ole Miss, WR: The Rebels have had more than their share of dynamic wideouts over the past few years with Mike Wallace and Dexter McCluster, but Moncrief is a different type of Freak. He's 6-3, 228 pounds and yet still can run a 4.44 40, vertical jumps 39 inches and broad jumps 11-1, according to Rebels strength coach Paul Jackson. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Justin Jackson, rSr/2014, Wake Forest, 6-1, 220 (DS#999 OLB) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 12. Justin Jackson, Wake Forest, OLB: A linebacker who minors in dance, Jackson's nifty footwork is also quite evident on the field and in all the drills Wake Forest tests in. The 6-1, 230-pounder has been timed in the 40 at 4.44 and a broad jump of 10-8 to go with a hang clean of 400 pounds. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Travis Swanson, rSr/2014, Arkansas, 6-4, 314 (DS#1 C) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 11. Travis Swanson, Arkansas, center: Arguably the nation's top center, the 320-pound Swanson has already wowed the new Razorbacks coaching staff. Swanson has been clocked by the Hogs staff in the three-cone drill at 7.39 seconds. (Former Texas A&M star Matt Joeckel, the second pick in April's draft, ran it in 7.40 while Eric Fisher, the first overall pick, did it in 7.59 seconds.) "His movement ability is second only to (Cleveland Browns All-Pro left tackle) Joe Thomas out of linemen that I have worked with in the last 12 years," said strength coach Ben Herbert, who came over from Wisconsin. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Ryan Carrethers, rSr/2014, Arkansas State, 6-2, 328 (DS#7 DT) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 10. Ryan Carrethers, Arkansas State, DT: A 2012 First Team All-Sun Belt Conference player, Carrethers certainly seems like he could be a force at any league in college football. The redshirt senior, who will be playing for his fourth head coach this fall, isn't just some sloppy, bad-body guy. His 16 percent body fat for a guy measuring in at 6-2, 332 is impressive. As are his 400-pound power clean, his 664-pound squat and 400-pound incline bench press.
"Ryan was a state champion heavyweight wrestler in Tennessee his senior year, which has translated to him being a fantastic defensive lineman that has started for three years on the championship Red Wolves teams," said Jeff Pitman, Arkansas State's strength coach. "Ryan can more than hang with former all freak team members I have coached. Examples are Daryn Colledge at Boise State and Nate Solder at the University of Colorado. Both [players] have had great NFL careers." - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Chris Borland, rSr/2014, Wisconsin, 5-11, 242 (DS#5 ILB) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 9. Chris Borland, Wisconsin, LB: The 5-11, 245-pound linebacker -- the 2009 Big Ten Freshman of the Year -- has had a knack for turning heads from the days even before he was a Badger. In fact, former Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema once told me he remembered noticing Borland in one of the Badgers camps. "I'm watching him and he had about five interceptions in about an hour and half of 7-on-7," said Bielema.
Borland does a standstill box jump of 51 inches, said strength coach Evan Simon. "He can also do a standing back flip at will and one time landed one in the splits for fun. He is as solid as two rocks and one of the hardest workers you'll find."
Not only that, Badger insiders say Borland has also been known to kick 40-yard field goals, practice catching balls either with one hand or behind his back out of the jugs gun and can throw the ball about 50 yards on a line. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Benardrick McKinney, rSo/2016, Mississippi State, 6-5, 235 (DS#1 OLB) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 8. Benardrick McKinney, Mississippi State, LB: One of the breakout stars of 2012 in the SEC, the 6-5 McKinney made 102 tackles last season to earn a spot on the Freshman All-SEC team. McKinney, another one of the unheralded recruits who has blossomed in the Dan Mullen era, arrived at MSU two years ago as a 216-pound former QB. Now he's a 240-pounder with a 41.5-inch vertical, up 3.5 inches from last year. He also can do 30 pull-ups, almost double his total from a year ago, according to Bulldogs strength coach Matt Balis. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Dri Archer, rSr/2014, Kent State, 5-07, 175 (DS#11 RB) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 7. Dri Archer, Kent State, RB-KR: You might as well call Archer Mr. MACtion. The 5-8, 173-pound Archer is the league's most exciting player and may be the quickest man in college football. Despite his diminutive frame, Archer still ran for 1,429 yards and 16 TDs, with a 9-yard average per carry. In eight games Archer had at least one run of 43 yards or longer. KSU strength coach Antoine Sharpe says Archer certainly backs up that home-run style when he clocked electronically a 4.29 40-yard dash. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Johnny Manziel, rSo/2016, Texas A&M, 6-0, 200 (DS#1 QB) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 6. Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M, QB: The guy who became the first freshman to ever win the Heisman Trophy has shown he's quite the all-around athlete as he continues his whirlwind bucket list offseason. Just in the past month, Manziel's broken 80 at Pebble Beach and homered in BP in a major league ballpark when he visited the San Diego Padres. Friends say the 6-footer is also capable of throwing down some eye-catching dunks on the basketball court as well. Oh yeah, and he also can do stuff like this too.
The real reason why he cracks the Top 10 on the Freaks List is for something else, though. At first glance, Manziel looks rather ordinary at 6-0, 210, but coaches say in addition to his preternatural wheels, the Aggies star has huge hands, which are a big plus for any QB, especially a shorter one. A&M coach Kevin Sumlin said Manziel's oversized mitts remind him of another play-making 6-foot QB on a team he coached back in his Purdue days -- Drew Brees, who apparently has thumbs the size of croissants.
"Having those big hands not only helps tote the ball in traffic, but he can basically go all through his motion and still pull the ball back," noted George Whitfield, a private QB coach who helps train Manziel. Whitfield also has worked with some huge NFL quarterbacks, Ben Roethlisberger, Cam Newton and Andrew Luck. All three of those QBs have size 14 shoes. Manziel wears 15s. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Marqise Lee, Jr/2015, Southern Cal, 6-0, 195 (DS#1 WR) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 5. Marqise Lee, USC, WR: The biggest bright spot on what was an otherwise nightmarish 2012 season for the Trojans, Lee isn't the nation's biggest receiver at 6 feet, 195 pounds, but he may be the most dynamic. Last year, he won the Biletnikoff Award after catching 118 passes for 1,721 yards and 14 TDs. Lee also averaged 29 yards per kick return and 8 yards a carry. There's a good chance he also may play defense this year too.
Lee's explosiveness is evidenced by his work with the USC track team as well. He's a 25-foot long jumper and he's also run on the sprint relay team. "He's gotta be in the top five of the most freakish athletes I've ever been around," said USC WR coach Tee Martin, a former standout QB at Tennessee who also played in the NFL with the Pittsburgh Steelers. "He's in there with the Jamal Lewises, the Leonard Littles, the Donta Stallworths and Kordell Stewarts. The things that are so great about Marqise is he's got this great ability to contort his body and to jump and just explode and go from zero to 60 really fast. And the really scary part is he's still so young and is working so hard to get better." - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Taylor Lewan, rSr/2014, Michigan, 6-7, 308 (DS#2 OT) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 4. Taylor Lewan, Michigan, OT: A projected top-15 pick by many NFL Draft analysts if he had opted to leave Ann Arbor after last season, the towering left tackle returns this fall to anchor the Wolverines line. The 6-8, 309-pound Lewan, who's known for his both his nastiness and his nimble feet to rival coaches, would've put on quite a display had he went to Indy for the combine in February.
According to Wolverines strength coach Aaron Wellman, Lewan has clocked an electronically-timed 4.8 40-yard dash. The Arizona native has also, despite his long arms, bench pressed 275 pounds 21 times and also squats 550 pounds. In addition, this offseason Lewan improved his vertical jump to 29 inches, up from 26 last year. "He's a great worker and a great leader," said Wellman. "We're lucky he decided to come back. He is so unselfish. He came back to win a Big Ten championship and leave a legacy here."
Wellman said Lewan often will call him or spend time in his office asking him all sorts of questions about training and diet. "The nutrition piece is big for him. Anything related to him becoming a better football player, he asks about." - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com
05/21/13 - Lache Seastrunk, rJr/2015, Baylor, 5-09, 210 (DS#2 RB) 2013 FREAKS LIST: THE 20 CRAZIEST ATHLETES IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL: 3. Lache Seastrunk, Baylor, RB: Just being the Bears resident "Freak" is saying a lot. The Bears can go four-wide with a crew of receivers who each have been clocked faster than 4.4. One of those guys, 170-pound Tevin Reese, runs 4.32 and has a 45-inch vertical jump. In fact, Baylor deserves Freak Team status this season. After hearing some of these super-fast 40 times, I asked Bears strength coach Kaz Kazadi if these are hand-timed 40s or timed electronically, which prompted one of the best quotes I've heard this year: "They're all electronic," Kazadi said. "We don't hand-time anything. Hand times are for your mama. Your mama don't work here. We're not hand-timing anything around here. We encourage people to come watch our guys work. They take this seriously."
Seastrunk is a testament to that. He's up to 210 pounds after arriving in Waco at 195 a few years ago. "A lot of guys think their speed is predicated on not getting too heavy, instead of getting more power," said Kazadi. "We got to kind of wean 'em off of being too concerned about putting on pounds." Seastrunk's vertical, which was an impressive 42.5 inches last winter, is now 44.2 inches. He also broad jumped 11-4 -- five inches more than in 2012. His 40 time: 4.36. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com