The University of Kentucky football program held its annual Pro Day on Wednesday morning at the Nutter indoor football facility. 18 NFL teams were in attendance, putting Wildcat players through a series of agility tests.
Underclassman were allowed to run for the scouts -- running back Alfonso Smith ran a best 4.27 seconds 40--yard sprint. Cornerback Trevard Lindley, who surprised even his coach when he announced he would return for his senior season, didn't run particularly well, stumbling a couple of times as he tried to break out of a three-point stance on the field turf. One teammate said Lindley's best 40 time was in the 4.5 range.
But it was the outgoing senior class, one that coach Rich Brooks has saluted for keeping his team's bowl streak alive, that the scouts were there to see. Cornerback David Jones ran a 4.37 seconds 40-yard dash, best among the seniors. Jones said he's been training with former Olympic gold medalist Butch Reynolds, who immediately spotted a flaw in Jones' running style.
Jones said the pulled hamstrings he suffered at UK were a result of Jones running flat-footed. Reynolds noticed right away, Jones said, and has Jones now running with his toes pointed upward. Jones said he even shaved a few tenths of a second off his 40 time.
Safety Marcus McClinton didn't have a great showing. At one point, during a pass coverage drill, McClinton dropped three straight balls thrown to him. The Ft. Campbell native didn't seem too worried, saying the pro scouts know of his ability to close on receivers and deliver the big hit. He also notes his 10 career interceptions as a source of pride.
Defensive tackle Myron Pryor did not run for the scouts, but did participate in several lineman drills.
Offensive tackle Garry Williams appeared to be in great shape, drawing rave reviews from teammates and media types. Williams is said to have been training in Cincinnati.
One guy who didn't work out for the scouts was Dicky Lyons. Lyons is still recovering from a knee injury, but said he's been cleared to run. Lyons has been running 20-yard sprints and will gradually work up to 40 yards.
Lyons said there's no swelling in the knee and is happy with the results so far.
He will marry his high school sweetheart this Saturday in New Orleans. Lyons said he will head back to Louisiana on Wednesday and will attend a bachelor party in his honor on Thursday.
Incidentally, Lyons said he has been training with a group of guys near New Orleans, including Alabama running back Glen Coffee, who torched UK in an early season game at Tuscaloosa. Lyons said he was blown away by Coffee's strength, which included bench pressing 485 pounds.
Brooks was optimistic about the chances of several players in the group. "I think quite a few guys are going to be drafted out of this outgoing senior class. There's going to be a good representation of Kentucky Wildcats that'll be on NFL rosters out of this group next year."
Those are a few of the highlights... Stay tuned.