Thursday, May 7, 2009

Another Combine surprise

At the South Carolina Shrine Bowl combine at Spartanburg Dorman High last month, there was a kid named Charles Wilkins out of Chapman High. You won't find him on the recruiting services'lists, but Wilkins slapped up some remarkable numbers.

It was a poor day for 40-yard dash times, what with the coaches insisting that they be run on grass and that the players wear football cleats rather than track shoes.

Wilkins first was weighed (229 pounds) and measured (6 feet tall). His bulk did not appear to bode well for his 40-yard dash time.

Except that he went out and ran 4.60 and 4.65-second 40s, the best combined times posted by any of the players listed at middle linebacker.

In comparison, DeAndre Hopkins, a DB considered one of the state's best, ran his 40s in 4.90 and 4.85, attesting to the slowness of the short course.

Wilkins also turned in a 9'2" broad jump, again the best of the 19 players listed in his category. And he bench-pressed 185 pounds 19 times, second-best in his group.

The only measured drill in which he didn't stand out was in the pro shuttle, which tests agility over a short, quick, back-and-forth course. His time of 4.7 seconds left him near the bottom of that list.

Last season, Wilkins had 95 tackles, including 13 tackles for losses.

While he may attend a junior college first, Wilkins is the kind of athlete who could eventually wind up playing at a university near you.

--Stan Olson

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