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Joshua Howard Shares his All-Star Experience

Ball State safety Joshua Howard had a fun week in sunny Southern California while the rest of us were sliding on the ice in Muncie.

Howard shared his experience at Saturday’s NFLPA Collegiate Bowl with OTP.

Joshua Howard, coming to an NFL team near you.

“This is one of the best football experiences in my life. It’s probably not better than my freshmen year after we finished the season 12-0 or the atmosphere at Lucas Oil Stadium for the Indiana game. But this moment is up there. I have been fortunate enough to meet and be coached by Dick Vermeil, Priest Holmes, Isaac Bruce, Ray Crockett and many more. We had a live personal comedy show by Mike Epps and I got my hair cut by Kobe Bryant’s personal barber (so I’ve been told). This is a wonderful experience for me as a player and a man. These NFL legends are teaching us how to be better football players on the field and better men off the field. The NFLPA Bowl has impressed me every day I have been here (it being in California doesn’t hurt either). I will be playing for the National team (black jersey) and I will be wearing number 32. Also, I will be starting! Again, I will do my best to represent everyone involved with Ball State football from the players, coaches and other staff to the students and citizens of Muncie, Indiana. I would not be where I am without those guys and especially to my family and hometown, Inkster, MI. I will be representing you as well with all my power. As always God bless and GO CARDS!”

This is what Howard shared after the game on his individual performance.

“I had 7-8 tackles and one big hit! I started the game. Then I came back in with four minutes left in the 2nd. Then I came in half way thru the 3rd and played for the rest of the game.”

Howard was the starting safety for the National team’s 20-14 victory. I was unable to watch the game as it was on the new NBC Sports Network which is nowhere to be found on basic cable.

But this game could have been played on the Lifetime channel and still would have provided great exposure for Howard. The amount of playing time a coaching icon in Vermeil gave him has to be a great sign. Making as many tackles as he did does not hurt either.

The names Howard met feature major star power. Playing on the field was clearly a small portion of his total experience.

At least, Howard and fellow safety Sean Baker, who also participated in an All-Star game, will make draft day and training camp very interesting for Ball State fans. Here is to hoping whether as a draft pick or undrafted free agent, they will both be given a strong opportunity to make an NFL roster.  Best of luck Cardinals!

Ball State Safeties Play in All-Star Games

I need no thumb to feast on souls

The “Safety U” nickname I gave Ball State in my previous post is gaining more and more steam.

Ball State safeties Sean Baker and Joshua Howard have or will soon participate in a college all-star game.

Baker played Monday in the Casino Del Sol All-Star Game in Arizona. According to Doug Zaleski of the Muncie Start Press he recorded a tackle as a backup.

Baker was also healthy for the game which is a good sign for his draft status. Ball State fans are used to seeing a cast on No. 25 so his performance Monday should put to rest some of those health concerns among NFL scouts.

Howard will play in the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl out in California this Saturday. According to the game’s website the all-star team Howard is on will be coached by NFL great Dick Vermeil.

After Saturday’s game Howard can say he has been coached by Brady Hoke, and Dick Vermeil. Not many can say that. Although many are probably glad they were not coached by Stan Parrish for two years so you take the good with the bad I suppose.

I have not made contact with Howard yet but if he shares any moments from his all-star experience I will post them here at OTP. Go “Safety U” go.

EXCLUSIVE: Ball State Safety Joshua Howard Prepares for NFL Draft

Writers note: Sometimes as a reporter, columnist, blogger or rascal, you catch a break. I am friends with Ball State safety Joshua Howard and he was able to inform me on his future plans this week. At a newspaper this would be a conflict of interest but at a blog it is fair game.  As Charlie Sheen would say if he were a Ball State fan, “Wenning!”

Joshua Howard

Ball State Safety Joshua Howard is trying to take his talents to the NFL. It is good to see Ball State players place themselves in a position to play on Sundays. Howard is away from Muncie preparing for the draft and I can speak for everyone here at OTP we wish him the best. Here is a statement from No. 20 himself he gave me over Facebook.

“I am currently in Richmond, Virginia training for Ball State’s NFL pro-day. I just got in on Tuesday (1-10-12), and I will be back in Muncie around the end of February/beginning of March. I have a full out workout schedule that starts at 5 a.m. and ends at 7 p.m. (of course with meals and breaks in between all of that). I was contacted by a trainer, and I let my agent know immediately about this wonderful opportunity. I am also still a Ball State student, I am enrolled in online classes. So I will be able to still graduate and train for NFL preparation. It’s a wonderful situation I am in, and I am extremely thankful for everyone who made this possible. So, I will be back around Spring Break but until then, good luck to the entire Football program with preparation for next season. Also, thank you to everyone who has a part in every bit of my success, I greatly appreciate it. Until I return, as always — GO CARDS!”

It is nice to see that Howard is going to still be able to graduate while preparing for the draft. I guess that saying “you can’t have your cake and eat it too” was false. It is also impressive Howard all ready has an agent. The only agent most Ball State students could get is if we robbed a bank and were assigned a crummy public defender. Not that we would actually do that.

The Cardinals need more alumni in the NFL. Each touchdown pass Drew Brees throws in New Orleans is free marketing for Purdue. Ball State can only point to a couple of punters as their NFL products right now. If Howard and fellow safety Sean Baker (a lock to be drafted in the first four rounds) can have successful NFL careers than maybe Ball State can ditch nickname “Punter U” for the new moniker of “Safety U.” Granted, that name may confuse Ball State with a Lifeguard class.

Even more important is what this says about the senior class. Howard, Baker, and maybe center Kreg Hunter will get a chance to prove themselves in NFL training camps this summer. This senior class has gone through multiple coaches, coordinators, and experienced more drama than most recruiting classes should ever have to face. From the penthouse in 2008 (12-2) to the outhouse in 2009 (2-10) to a middle-class home in the suburbs in 2011 (6-6). Is this college football or is this real estate?

Coach Pete Lembo has been given a bulk of the credit for turning the ship around but the senior leadership on the roster was a huge help. They knew what it was like to win and made sure their younger teammates were just as passionate about returning to glory.

For now we wish Howard the best. I could list the NFL teams that are in need of a safety but that would double the size of this column. “Safety U” is sounding better and better all ready.

Catching a football with No. 20 closing in can ruin your weekend as this Central Michigan player is about to learn the hard way.

Brandon Crawford, Good Story, Great Prospect

Credit: A. J. Mast for The New York Times

Any Ball State fan, or any football watcher who had the privilege of catching the Cardinals over the last couple years is familiar with Brandon Crawford. His story, of military service, being an older than normal student, and his path that led him to Muncie, Coach Hoke, and the Cardinals is one of those feel-good goosebumpy human interest pieces that sideline reporters and gameday pundits brought up in between comments about Dan Lefevour. Thankfully, just days away from the NFL Draft on Thursday evening, the rest of the world is beginning to take notice.

The attention for Crawford began in earnest last week as The Old Gray Lady, (or the New York Times) ran a piece on Crawford and his journey.  Since the NY Times has also referenced OTP in their preview piece on the Cardinals last summer, clearly they are a bastion of knowledge and football acumen.

Of note, for me at least, was this statement from Reed Johnson, a former personnel executive for the Atlanta Falcons. “He’s got the intangibles you’re looking for; you just wish he was 23. Maybe he’s on a developmental squad. But what are you developing at 33 years old? You have to make that decision where you want to spend your money.”

While in theory I agree that perhaps there is better upside by spending money on a young prospect which may blossom into something usable, to me there is considerably more risk as well. In the risk-reward game of professional athletics, I would think that the sure bet of work ethic, discipline, and drive would trump the problems which may accompany someone younger.

As if the NY Times wasn’t a big enough stage for Crawford, the Kansas City Star also ran a profile piece on him Sunday. While surprising in and of itself that a paper in Kansas City would profile someone from Ball State University, it is perhaps even more surprising that the author of the column wasn’t BSU’s own Jason Whitlock. JW makes it a point to champion the Cardinals wherever he goes or publishes, and I have to hand it to the KC Star for doling this piece out to another reporter. Had Whitlock been the scribe, it would have been cast aside as another fan-driven BSU column and lost a small bit of credibility. I would imagine that JW also realized this, and if so and he voluntarily passed, then he did a favor to Crawford. Props to JW.

So here we sit in a much different place than last spring, where the questions about the draft status of Cardinals like Nate Davis and Robert Brewster weren’t so much a matter of “if”, but very much a matter of “when”. This year, that’s quite the opposite. As the draftniks and pundits roll on to Thursday, their common mantra will be that a player doesn’t have to convince 32 teams he’s worthy of a pick, he only has to convince one. For Crawford, let’s hope one of these teams sees the light.

Darius Hill Update

We, along with numerous mainstream media outlets, reported on Monday that former Cardinal Tight End Darius Hill was headed to the Giants. That report, as it turns out, is kind of false, and the many layers of Hill’s potential journey to the NFL was reported by Muncie Star Press Ball State beat writer Doug Zaleski.

Z reports via his blog this evening:

The 6-foot-6 tight end will make his first attempt at getting into the NFL with the Cincinnati Bengals.

Hill’s agent, Storm Kirschenbaum, told me today that at least five NFL teams have interest in signing Hill. The strategy is to have Hill attend the Bengals’ rookie mini-camp this week and sign with them if they offer him a free-agent deal.

If that doesn’t happen, Hill will attend the rookie camp of the New York Giants from May 7-10. But clearly his interest is with the Bengals.

“All of Cincinnati’s tight ends are blocking tight ends,” Kirschenbaum said. “They drafted Chase Coffman and plan to use him as a blocking tight end. If (Hill) goes to Cincinnati and gets a contract, he won’t go to the Giants’ camp.”

Hill’s strength as a tight end is as a pass-catcher, which he showed throughout his career with the Cardinals. If neither the Bengals nor the Giants sign Hill, he has generated interest from the Browns, Jaguars and Panthers, according to his agent.

So we were sort of half right, which amounts to basically all wrong, but we did have the team right in the Giants, which is more than some can say. Here’s hoping that big 88’s workouts go exceptionally well and he ends up wherever they will get the most production out of him, whether it be Cincy, New York, or some yet to be named NFL team.

Kentucky Players Drafted, Blue-White Game Action

A big weekend in Wildcat football saw a player transition from Saturday to Sunday, as Myron Pryor went to the New England Patriots with their 6th Round selection. Pryor, one of dozens of SEC players to hear their name called in Radio City Music Hall, was the only University of Kentucky player to get the nod. For those curious what opposing offenses are going to be looking at next year…

Congrats to the big fella, and here’s to the chance that maybe, just maybe, he will help me not despise the Patriots as much as I do.

A host of Wildcats also have signed undrafted free agent deals as well. Among them: S Marcus McClinton (New England), P Tim Masthay (Indianapolis), and LB Johnny Williams (Jacksonville). Check out their new threads…

Outside of the draft, there was also a Spring football game, as the Blue team defeated the White team 28-23. From all indications it was a nice afternoon of football that showcased some surprises, most notably the play of reserve QB Will Fidler. Solid play from the defense, Randall Cobb, and the run game all gave the 20,000 or so fans on hand reason to smile.

Coach’s Brooks’ comments after the game…

Opening statement…
“Injury wise-it doesn’t appear that we had anything serious. E.J. Adams had a slight AC strain in his shoulder on a pass that he caught. Alfonso Smith sprained his arch in his foot. Danny Trevathan, on that last scramble by Mike Hartline, got a little bit of a hip pointer. Coshik Williams bruised the other shoulder, it wasn’t the same one. That was the extent of the injuries. From that standpoint it has to be the best spring that I’ve ever had as far as no serious injuries. So, from that standpoint it was excellent.

“I thought the effort all spring was excellent. Today, it’s never going to look as polished as you want when you mix and draft your team. Coach (Steve) Brown is 2-0 now in this game. So, he’s feeling pretty good. I think that there were a lot of good things that happened out there. There are some things that we obviously need to get better at. I think our fans got a great opportunity to see some new faces who will be doing some big things for us this next year. I was very pleased with the energetic crowd, and a very big crowd. I think it was the biggest crowd I’ve seen for a spring game since I’ve been here. It was fun for them I think, and it was fun for the players.”

(Editor’s note: spring game records are incomplete, but today’s attendance of 20,200 is the second-largest in UK history based on available information. The known record is 20,325 in 1987.)

On how the draft was constructed in allowing the Blue team to have Trevard Lindley, Micah Johnson, Jeremy Jarmon and Randall Cobb…
“You have an old draft guy on that side of the ball. Steve Ortmayer has run a lot of drafts in his day. It just works out how it works out. Joker (Phillips) had the first pick. Then each side got to take two at a time. So, hey, how it works is how it works. It ended up being competitive. It didn’t look like it would be in that first quarter. But, (Mike) Hartline, after what I thought was a shaky start throwing the ball, came back and did some very good things. He showed the competitor that he is when he brought his team back there in the second half. It was, I think, an entertaining game. Spring games are not always a really good, polished game. There were some turnovers. Most of them (turnovers) were by back-up players. The two interceptions were off of tipped balls.”

On the play of Will Fidler…
“I thought Fidler played the first quarter, and the first drive in particular, as well as I’ve ever seen him perform. Will’s problem isn’t arm strength. It’s usually been making the right decision, making it on time and he showed definite improvement in that area today. He started off like gang-busters. He had a pretty good guy to throw to (Randall Cobb) who made a few good plays. The one play Randall made reminded me of the one Dicky Lyons made when it was thrown behind him and he reached up and tipped it to himself and then turned it up the field and got some extra yards. Those are the kinds of plays that we need our receivers to make from time to time. Randall is obviously going to be a big-time playmaker and can help any quarterback I think look better. But, Will did a really good job early. He got some balls batted down later, which is not all his fault. We’ve got to get our offensive line a little more aggressive in getting the defender’s arms down. I thought he clearly closed the gap. And there was a gap. I feel much, much better about Will Fidler after this scrimmage. Obviously, he got the win.”

On the development of the receivers this spring…
“They’re not where I’d like them to be. We had a few guys make some plays. We had a young man not too many people knew about, but we knew about him in the last two or three weeks who has been impressive is Nick Melillo. He has put himself in a position where he is going to be looked at very hard in the fall. He doesn’t drop anything. He is physical. He plays hard. He plays fast. I’m encouraged from what I’ve seen from him. We did have some of our signees here today. I’m anxious to get them in here, one of them in particular was out here today a 6’5 200-pounder who runs fast — junior college player Chris Matthews. It is going to be a lot more competitive. Some people in the receiving position helped themselves today and some people were either stagnant or took a step back. That’s what the competition will be all about. There are some plays, in particular early, that I wasn’t happy about Hartline all spring were his deep throws. Today they were similar. They floated a little bit too much. I will say this, the wind was blowing very hard and made it extremely hard to throw deep. When you do throw deep it better be a tight spiral or the wind is really going to take it over. That’s what happened on several of those deep throws. One of the balls that was intercepted down in the endzone our receivers have to come back and compete for that ball and not allow an interception. Although the defender made a good play, I thought the receiver did not compete for the ball as he should have.”

On the play of the linebackers…
“How long has it been since Kentucky had a linebacker fast enough to return kickoffs? (referring to Danny Trevathan) That’s the encouraging thing about the speed of our team. We graduated a couple of really good linebackers in Braxton Kelley and Johnny Williams and now you put Sam Maxwell and Danny Trevathan on the field. I promise you, as good as those two guys were who graduated, these two guys filled it up this spring. They had great springs. Trevathan can run now. He got a little worn down and he still has some things to learn but, he is a playmaker. He not only has speed, he not only is tough he is instinctive. That’s a great combination of things to have.”

Cardinals Rock the Draft

For any who may have missed it this weekend, Ball State represented the MAC and the Cardinals by sending two players to professional rosters. One higher than expected, one lower than expected, but still a successful day for the program, the players, and the fans of the Cards. Get ’em while they’re hot…

Offensive tackle Robert Brewster and quarterback Nate Davis were both selected on Sunday, Brewster heading to the Dallas Cowboys in the 3rd round with the 75th overall pick, and Davis heading to the San Francisco 49ers in the 5th round, with the 171st overall pick.

For Brewster, it was a surprise to say the least, to see the big fella head off the board as the 7th tackle chosen in the 09 draft. Listening to the pundits on ESPN chat about him, they liked the pick, but are concerned with Brewster’s ability to play tackle in the NFL, insisting that he will likely end up as a guard. Regardless of where he ends up, he is a professional football player as of this moment, so congrats to Brewster.

For Nate Davis, it was a mixed bag all around. Though not surprising that he came off when he did, as most thought Davis was a 4th or 5th round selection, what was surprising was the players that came off the board at his position before him. Names like Stafford, Sanchez, and Freeman were to be expected, but names like Rhett Bomar and Stephen McGee were shocking to see chosen ahead of 13. The debate can begin now as to whether or not Nate should have stayed or left, but for this very moment, he deserves some celebration. He is a professional quarterback whose name was called during the NFL draft. And that alone, regardless of what Nate does in San Francisco or beyond, is a tremendous accomplishment.

Some other draft thoughts from an admitted NFL casual fan…

  • Can someone explain to me how the draftniks like Kiper and McShay can go to lauding Mark Sanchez as the next great thing to talking about him as a potential bust all in the course of 24 hours?
  • If someone can also explain to me why Tampa Bay felt the need to trade up two spots to take Josh Freeman, that would be most excellent.
  • Same goes for Oakland and Darius Heyward-Bey. Fantastic player, but they passed up Jeremy Maclin, Michael Crabtree, and Percy Harvin to grab him. Very very strange.
  • Aside from the Cardinals, other MAC draftees included: Northern Illinois’ DE Larry English (Round 1), Ohio’s S Michael Mitchell (Round 2), Western Michigan’s S Louis Delmas (Round 2) and CB Edjuan Biggers (Round 7), Temple’s DE Terrance Knighton (Round 3), Eastern Michigan’s OT T.J. Lang (Round 4), Kent State’s WR Julian Edelman (Round 7), Miami’s TE Jake O’Connell (Round 7)
  • Ball State’s Chris Miller, Darius Hill, BJ Hill, and Dan Gerberry could potentially make a roster as an undrafted free agent, which Andre Ramsey has done… signing with the Seahawks late Sunday night.

OTP’s Mock Mock Draft

In case you’ve been hiding under a rock lately or haven’t watched any ESPN programming over the last month, you may have missed all the Mock Drafts being bantered about on the Network, sports talk radio, and the web. Frankly, every Tom, Dick, and Harry have a mock draft out, including Todd McShay, who still isn’t as good at broadcasting as Harry Kalas’ corpse.

For particpation’s sake, we, your faithful site authors, decided to throw our hats in the ring with our individual Mocks.

Alan’s Mock Draft
Notable Disclaimer: I am not an NFL watcher. I watch the Colts and Bears, if on, and am forced to watch the Steelers since I have found a Steeler fan who is willing to put up with me on a regular and committed basis. Having said that, I do know enough about the teams and, more importantly, the draftees, to have some semblance of what’s what when it comes to the NFL Draft.

I also understand that mock drafts, in and of themselves, are overrated self-indulgent shots in the dark. Sort of like drafting itself. You are staking your franchise and hundreds of millions of dollars on a 22-year old who may or may not even be able to read his own name. The whole world has gone crazy. Off we go…

1. Detroit – Matthew Stafford, QB, Georgia: Stafford, though some will tell you otherwise, is a franchise type QB. He’s talented, tall, and decent, and let’s be honest, Detroit needs something good to happen with their football program.
2. St. Louis – Jason Smith, OT, Baylor: Quality tackles, much like blondes that can also do long division, are hard to find. Smith doesn’t have major personality flaws, he’s quick for a lineman, and he eats a ton of space at 6’5″ and 310 lbs.
3. Kansas City – Tyson Jackson, DE, LSU: Jackson is one of two prospects moving up draft boards and benefiting from some pre-draft hype. Kansas City has their future offensive star in Matt Cassel, so a pick to shore up a defensive unit isn’t a surprise.
4. Seattle – Mark Sanchez, QB, USC: The other player rocketing up draft boards is Sanchez. Seattle may grab him here or Washington may trade up for him, but either way, Sanchez is off the board in the top 5. Exceptionally talented with the media, has a good pedigree, and brings in no off the field issues whatsoever.
5. Cleveland – Michael Crabtree, WR, Texas Tech: This is assuming that the Browns can get a done deal for Braylon Edwards before draft day. If not, I expect them to look defensively and draft Curry or Raji.
6. Cincinnati – Eugene Monroe, OT, Virginia: Again, another big time tackle with 6’6″. 310 size, and no character issues. Monroe is durable, experienced, and aggressive, and has good football smarts from all accounts.
7. Oakland – Andre Smith, OT, Alabama: Were it not for his tremendous size, Smith wouldn’t be here. The guy has work ethic questions, character issues, and problems out the rear end, but it’s hard to overlook the sheer massiveness of this kid. Plus, it’s the Raiders, and they don’t seem to mind.
8. Jacksonville – Jeremy Maclin, WR, Missouri: Speed. Maclin is the best WR on the board after Crabtree, and new Jags QB Byron Leftwich will need some speedy sure-handed targets. Maclin fits that bill.
9. Green Bay – BJ Raji, DT, Boston College: Raji, presumed a sure fire top 3 or 4 pick by some, slips a bit only because of the epic hype around some other prospects. At 6’2″ 337, Raji is another epic space eater who’s fast off the ball and is a huge force in the run game, which plays in important part of the NFC North.
10. San Francisco – Aaron Curry, LB, Wake Forest: San Francisco, much like Detroit, just has too many holes to fill, and Curry is the top talent still on the board. If they get him here, and it’s a big if, it’s an absolute steal.

BONUS PREDICTIONS: Nate Davis goes in the late 3rd round, probably to the Colts, and Robert Brewster goes to the Pats in the 6th.

Edge’s Mock Draft
Notable Disclaimer: I respect the brain. Therefore, I’m offering a coda to my recent Wonderlic article. These brains are the best of 2009, and they apparently haven’t been too battered on the gridiron (yet). I based this on the Wonderlic batting average. I could have done the most correct answers, but you know, that’s pretty boring. Batting averages are more exciting. Plus I got to use my Excel skills on this. Thanks, University of Phoenix Online!

1. Detroit – Tony Fiammetta, FB, Syracuse: 0.880
2. St. Louis – Marquez Branson, HB, Central Arkansas: 0.875
3. Kansas City – A.Q. Shipley, C, Penn State: 0.870
4. Seattle – Donald Washington, CB, Ohio State: 0.850
5. Cleveland – Don Carey, CB, Norfolk State: 0.840
6. Cincinnati – Ramses Barden, WR, Cal Poly: 0.839
7. Oakland – Andrew Gardner, OT, Georgia Tech: 0.829
8. Jacksonville – Kory Sheets, RB, Purdue: 0.826
9. Green Bay – Anthony Hill, TE, North Carolina State: 0.826
10. San Francisco – Kevin Barnes, CB, Maryland: 0.820

BONUS PREDICTIONS: Percy Harvin (0.286) will get stoned tomorrow. Very stoned. I mean, it’s not like they’ll give him another test so soon after he failed, right? Emmanuel Cook of South Carolina (0.224) will want to play in the NFL, but Roger Goodell will require he attend summer school instead. And Matt Stafford (0.778) will be drafted first.

RV’s Mock Draft
Notable Disclaimer:
Coming soon!

Life on the Edge: The Wonderlic Explained

Most of you know Edge as the roving correspondent for our OTP Muncie bureau. He brings delight and joy to the masses with his Rock & Roll Report Cards after Ball State games which he decides to rock out at in person. In an effort to ensure your Awesome Quotient, or AQ as we like to call it, increases on a weekly basis, Edge offers insight into the Cards’ upcoming opponent or random goings on in college football. This week’s edition? The Wonderlic Explained.

Life on the Edge:
The Wonderlic Explained

Most of you that read OTP will understand about the Wonderlic. But I’ve been hearing questions about this test from some casual OTP readers (we’ll call them the fairweather fans). As the resident, somewhat scholarly rocker, I think it’s my duty to explain some things about this test. Here goes:

50 questions, 12 minutes. Go.

That’s pretty much it, my fellow Einsteins. But what questions are on this test… Well, here’s a few brain busters (Note: these can be found on the Internet. They are not confirmed as being on this year’s test, but they are confirmed as the types of questions asked):

  • “What number month is September?”
  • “When rope is selling at $.10 a foot, how many feet can you buy for sixty cents?”
  • “A boy is 17 years old and his sister is twice as old. When the boy is 23 years old, what will be the age of his sister?”

Your brain hurt yet? Well, before you think you’d be the next Stephen Hawking, the test does get progressively harder. Such as:

  • “A physical education class has three times as many girls as boys. During a class basketball game, the girls average 18 points each, and the class as a whole averages 17 points per person. How many points does each boy score on average?”
  • “A box of staples has a length of 6 cm, a width of 7 cm, and a volume of 378 cm cubed. What is the height of the box?”
  • “What is the average of all of the integers from 13 to 37?”

Granted, I’ll bet most college-educated people could figure these out relatively easily. But, keep in mind: 50 questions, 12 minutes. See how things can get a bit difficult? It’s no wonder that the averages tend to be in the mid-twenties for most test-takers. Scoring a 50 would probably get you drafted in the first round of the MENSA draft. Scoring a 6? Well, I guess you could be a mentally unstable quarterback for the Tennessee Titans.

Take a second and check out this year’s scores. I’ll wait while you review…

So, how about that 11, Nate?

So close… Derp.

Let’s be honest here: that’s pretty bad. “Learning disability” or not, it’s just… not good. “Ah, but numbers can be deceiving, can’t they Edge?” Well, I suppose an 11 out of 30 wouldn’t be too bad, right?

But that’s not what happened here… when you answer 45 questions and only get 11 right? Ouch dude. That’s a 0.244 batting average. To put this into a little more perspective, the second-worst correct answers on the test for a quarterback was 16. Also not good. Until you take into account he only got through 21 questions. That’s a 0.762 batting average. Game over, get your free Coke at the concession stand.

Now, I know that most teams aren’t looking to draft financial advisers and chemists, but when a team sees a guy that’s… slow?… you have to believe that they’ll have some doubts. In my quick scan of scores (2nd test), I see only four who scored a worse batting average than Davis (and Johnny Knox of Abilene Christian, also a 0.244 hitter).

Valedictorian of Dumbshit U. – Emmanuel Cook of South Carolina scored an 11 of 49; a 0.224 batting average
Salutatorian of Dumbshit U. – David Richmond of San Jose State scored a 10 of 43; a 0.233 batting average
Ummm.. Co-Thirdatorians of Dumbshit U. – Taurus Johnson of South Florida and Sen’Derrick Marks of Auburn both scored a 12 of 50; a 0.240 batting average

Now, there were plenty of 11s, 12s, even a 9. But I tend to glance at the number to the right which indicates the number of questions answered. Even if a player only answers 30, but gets 20 correct, that indicates intelligence on some level. It may mean he takes too long reading or that he’s too meticulous, or he knows he’s dumb, so he only answers the ones he’s sure are right – thus an intelligent move. But he still got 2/3 of the questions correct. Certainly better than under 1/4, right my fellow mathmeticians?

Bottom line? The Wonderlic sacked Davis. It gang-sacked him. And his approach was borderline idiotic. Here’s the deal… too late now of course: if you don’t know the answer, SKIP IT! At least you can feign intelligence this way. Like him or not, “learning disability” or not, his stock has not increased, and he’s going to be hard-pressed to get the contract he thought he’d get before the MAC championship. And note to self: if I ever take a test next to Nate Davis, don’t copy off of him.

Edge’s Do’s and Don’ts for a Rockin’ Rookie Season

Roving OTP Reporter and our OTP Muncie Bureau Chief, Edge brings his rock and roll attitude to the college football world whenever he gets the inkling. Through the season you’ll find him grading the Cardinals in his weekly Rock and Roll Report Card, and checking in from time to time with his Life on the Edge series.

Edge’s 25 Do’s and Don’ts for a Rockin’ Rookie Season

Congratulations! You are no longer a college football player, and your career in the NFL is just beginning. Here are 25 lessons from Edge to succeed as a rookie in the NFL:
#1 – Don’t get arrested one month before the draft
#2 – Don’t forget that Marvin Harrison has shot a man.
#3 – Don’t decide to stage animal fights unless you want to get F’d in the A.
#4 – Don’t eat everything in sight.
#5 – Do accept the Madden cover photo at your own risk. Same advice goes for clubbing and hanging with Ricky Williams.
#6 – Do avoid being a whiny bitch if your name comes up in trade talks. If you do your job well, this won’t happen.
#7 – Don’t think Plaxico Burress is a role model.
#8 – Do make it rain.
#9 – If Terrell Owens is traded to your team, do begin chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
#10 – Don’t get diabetes.
#11 – If you really want to get paid handsomely, do stomp on someone’s helmetless head, repent, and wait for the money bags to arrive in multiple Brinks armored trucks.
#12 – Don’t take parenting advice from Travis Henry.
#13 – Don’t accept the responsibility of holding any videocameras for a staff member from New England.
#14 – Don’t expect retirement money.
#15 – Do make jokes at Vince Young’s expense and make gentlemanly wagers on the exact day of his suicide.
#16 – Don’t sleep over at Sean Taylor’s house.
#17 – Do attend Narcotics Anonymous at least once with Michael Irvin just to get perspective.
#18 – Don’t sign up for Ryan Leaf’s “Steps to Success” seminar in Ballroom B of the Hilton.
#19 – Don’t date Jessica Simpson.
#20 – Motorcycles. Don’t.
#21 – Don’t even let Roger Goodell find out you cheated on your math test in 2nd grade. That’s 5 games, $45,000, and one weekend vacuuming his pool.
#22 – Do take part in a team dance, but challenge yourself to make it somewhat heterosexual.
#23 – If you love a crowd, don’t head to Detroit.
#24 – Don’t attend Ray Carruth’s “So You Got Your Girlfriend Pregnant?” seminar, taking place in Ballroom A of the Hilton immediately following Ryan Leaf.
#25 – Do attempt to break records if you have the skill. Don’t attempt to break Nate Newton’s weight records – physical and weed-smuggling.