I never really followed the draft until 1991. It was just after the Spring Game wrapped up and walking along the track by the goalposts of what is now the Dawg Pack and who happened to be walking by me? Steve Emtman. I forget if he had been announced as being taken first overall yet, but from the soreness of my hand from his High-5 he had been. Since that point in time I've kept an eye on the draft for the Huskies and it's always interesting to see things from the scouts eyes at the Combine.
Scrolling through the only two players for the Huskies, Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Bishop Sanky a couple of things surprised me about each athlete.
Firstly, ASJ was supposed to be a larger than life at 6'-7". We heard this all though his recruiting and in the build up to the draft. Actually, he's 6'-5". The NFL is good about putting fractions on the end of measurements, but nope, he's a flat six-five.
What does his size actually mean? Well, in the Tight End position an athlete is, ideally, a blocker and a receiver. At 6'-5" in order to be an effective blocker he will need to add some additional weight. Big question is: can his 6'5" frame handle it while maintaining his speed.
Secondly, his hand-size is just 9 3/4". That's decent for a tight end, but Colt Lyerla's hands measured 10 1/2...although ASJ does make it even with his wing-span. In a game of inches those are important measurables.
Finally, a foot injury limited Austin so there is no data on his explosiveness. He came in 20 pounds heavy, and his work ethic has been questioned by scouts so this was not a good day for him and he left there with more questions about him than answers.
Sanky came in at #9 in the 40 at 4.49. I expected him to be around 4.45 but this is a good time...especially at 209 pounds. That said, Oregon's DeAnthony Thomas came in just behind him at 4.50 along with Tre Mason. DeAnthony came in 30 pounds lighter than Sanky.
Speaking of Mason, he's an inch shorter than Sanky, has smaller hands by an inch, has 2" less of a wingspan, and is slightly lighter. He also finished with fewer rushing yards than Sanky but had the same per carry average. Sanky finished with 200 more all-purpose yards. I should also add that Carey averaged 5.3 yards per carry while Sanky was at 5.7.
One thing that Husky fans loved about Bishop was his ball security...save for his first play as a Dawg in Lincoln, Nebraska. Sanky's hands measured almost a half of an inch longer than any other RB at 10". For all the talk about how big Super Bowl Champion, Russell Wilson's hands, Sanky comes in just 1/4" inch shy of his. Sanky's hands are bigger than most of the QBs at the Combine.
Lead Butts and SEC Speed
For all of the talk of SEC speed there are just two in the top 10 at the TE spot and there are Two Utah Utes in the top 10. At the RB position Henry Josey is the fastest SEC player, but he was in the Big 12 when he was recruited. Of the traditional SEC powers Tre Mason of Auburn is the fastest SEC player at #11.
All in all it was a bit of a mixed bag for UW at the combine. Sanky was up, Austin was down, and Keith Price was nowhere to be found. For Price, though, it may have been a bit of blessing as UW pro day will be his time to shine.