/notables/2017/04/d3-draft-chances

Tryout invites number more than a dozen

 

Unlike some previous years, it seems there is no obvious Division III NFL draft candidate, and even the buzz around Division III players in general has been low headed into the draft and rookie free-agent signing season. However, here are some of the names you might hear when the draft winds down and the signing period begins.

Colts: Justin Gibbons, CB, Aurora

If you know of Gibbons, you know him from his leaping block of an extra point in overtime to beat Benedictine in the final week of the regular season. At 6-3, 198, he's got the requisite size, and his 40 time in the mid-4.5 range doesn't exclude him, either. The Indianapolis Colts signed him to a rookie free agent contract.

Raiders: Nicholas Morrow, S, Greenville

Morrow recorded 66 tackles, 46 solo for Greenville, including 11 tackles for loss and a pair of sacks this past season. At 6-1, 216, Morrow ran a 4.51 at Northwestern's pro day. He signed a rookie free agent contract with the Raiders.

Cameron Brown worked out with Green Bay Packers rookies and free agent contenders.
Photo by Larry Radloff, d3photography.com

Invited: Dan Arnold, WR, UW-Platteville

Arnold had a great senior season for the Pioneers and ran a 4.63 for scouts at Wisconsin's pro day. He posted a 39-1/2 inch vertical and measures 6-5, 222. He apparently received invites to both the Chiefs' and Saints' camp and has accepted them both.

Invited: Jamar Baynard, RB, Wesley

Baynard posted a 4.52 in the 40 and was invited to the Redskins rookie free agent camp.

Invited: Cameron Brown, DB, UW-Oshkosh

Brown was invited to the Packers minicamp after posting a 4.5 40 time and recording a 43-inch vertical at a regional combine (numbers self-reported). 

Invited: Lecorey Demease, DB, Louisiana College

Demease was invited to the New Orleans Saints' rookie minicamp. No workout numbers were immediately available.

Invited: Trevor Heitland, RB, Coe

Heitland, who measured in at 5-9, 190, at a pro day workout at Iowa State, had a 4.64 40 time and got invited to the San Francisco 49ers minicamp.

Invited: Anthony Hill, DB, Hamline

Hill posted a 4.59 time in the 40 at Minnesota-Duluth's pro day, with a vertical of 35-1/2 inches. He measured in at 6-1, 189. Hill broke up three passes and had 34 stops in nine games for the Pipers and was invited to the Minnesota Vikings' rookie minicamp.

Invited: Brian Hunca, WR, Kenyon

Hunca had three games of 14 or more catches last season, including a combined 34 receptions for 347 yards against DePauw and Wittenberg. He will attend the Washington Redskins' minicamp.

Invited: Decorian Johnson, S, McMurry

Johnson led the War Hawks in tackles last season with 58 and had an interception. He also returned a punt for a touchdown. He'll be in the Chiefs' minicamp. At a hair under 5-11, 186, Johnson averaged a 4.62 in the 40 at his pro day at Rice. 

Invited: B.J. Mitchell, RB, Mount Union

Mitchell stands 5-5, 170, but he posted a 4.5 40 time at Toledo's pro day and honestly, behind an NFL offensive line, who's going to be able to find him? The Michigan native was invited to the Detroit Lions' rookie minicamp.

Invited: Brandon Neal, CB, Thomas More

Workout numbers were not available on Brandon Neal, although he runs track for the Saints as well and recorded an 11.31 in the 100-meter dash this season. He landed in the Bengals' rookie minicamp.

Invited: Paul Rucci, LS, Rowan

Rucci was the long snapper for the Profs in all four of his years in Glassboro, and was invited to the Arizona Cardinals' rookie minicamp.

Invited: Kezlow Smith, WR, Lakeland

At 5 feet, 10 and a half inches, Smith is small for the NFL but has great speed, with a 4.47 40 time at a pro day at UW-Madison. He was invited to the Minnesota Vikings camp.

Invited: Teidrick Smith, OLB/DE, Mary Hardin-Baylor

Smith participated at Baylor's pro day and had a private workout with the Los Angeles Rams in April. The Rams invited him to their rookie minicamp.

Invited: Alex Snyder, QB, Tufts

Snyder threw just 69 passes all season, but he was 115-for-215 as a junior for the Jumbos. Someone coming out of the NESCAC doesn't have a lot of reps, playing at least 20 percent fewer games than most Division III student-athletes, but the Buccaneers saw something in him and he does measure in at nearly 6-foot-5. He then moved on to the Redskins camp.

Invited: Austin Tennessee, DB, Stevenson

Tennessee was on scouts' radar already heading into the 2016 season and he probably didn't hurt himself with six interceptions last season while moving from cornerback to safety. He's listed at 6-1, 195. Tennessee was invited to the Minnesota Vikings' rookie minicamp.

Names you could still hear

Brent Campbell, TE, UW-Whitewater

Campbell has the blocking skills to participate at the next level and appears to have good enough hands to have the ball thrown his way as well. Plus he has the size (6-5, 263).

Bryan Scott, QB, Occidental

Scott hasn't appeared on too many scouting services, but he gained some notoriety at his pro day at Southern Cal in March.

Generally about a half-dozen Division III players sign free agent contracts after the draft in any given year. Others are invited, unsigned, to rookie minicamps. Others are brought in as camp arms or camp wideouts to help teams look at other players they consider better prospects, but any chance to get looked at is a positive one.

Sep. 16: All times Eastern
Final
at Worcester State 42, Fitchburg State 26
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at Ursinus 35, Juniata 28
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Salve Regina 27, at Dean 0
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at Johns Hopkins 37, Moravian 7
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Massachusetts Maritime 34, at Maine Maritime 25
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Wesley 33, at TCNJ 0
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at RPI 31, Western New England 14
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Buffalo State 53, at Morrisville State 48
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at Rochester 14, Alfred State 7
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Stevenson 52, at FDU-Florham 14
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Union 31, at Gallaudet 21
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at Williams 28, Bowdoin 14
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Sewanee 29, at Austin 17
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at Middlebury 30, Wesleyan 27
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at Tufts 35, Hamilton 28
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Salisbury 21, at Kean 13
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at Olivet 37, Aurora 21
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at Amherst 41, Bates 17
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at Trinity (Conn.) 35, Colby 0
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at Franklin and Marshall 43, McDaniel 41
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Montclair State 24, at Southern Virginia 0
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Rowan 41, at William Paterson 14
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Springfield 66, at Mount Ida 20
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UW-Platteville 38, at Hampden-Sydney 29
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DePauw 55, at Hiram 28
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at Alma 45, Benedictine 40
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at Trine 55, Wisconsin Lutheran 7
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at Albion 79, Concordia (Wis.) 7
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Dickinson 24, at Gettysburg 21
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at Wooster 38, Ohio Wesleyan 20
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Thiel 28, at Bethany 13
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LaGrange 39, at Methodist 30
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at Wabash 62, Kenyon 7
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King's 44, at Lebanon Valley 39
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at Martin Luther 42, Iowa Wesleyan 20
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at MIT 31, Endicott 26
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at Alfred 24, Utica 17
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Maryville (Tenn.) 56, at Emory and Henry 46
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Averett 19, at Ferrum 7
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at Catholic 25, Randolph-Macon 20
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Susquehanna 14, at Muhlenberg 11
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at Cortland 31, Hartwick 30
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Brevard 63, at Greensboro 7
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Ithaca 24, at St. Lawrence 13
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at St. Scholastica 48, Westminster (Mo.) 18
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MacMurray 48, at Crown 34
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at Greenville 21, Northwestern (Minn.) 15
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Eureka 48, at Minnesota-Morris 20
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UW-Whitewater 40, at Washington U. 21
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at Widener 34, Misericordia 21
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at Coast Guard 13, Nichols 0
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at Hope 37, Lakeland 35
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Heidelberg 40, at Ohio Northern 21
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Carnegie Mellon 30, at Waynesburg 20
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Mount Union 69, at Marietta 3
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at Centre 52, Hendrix 42
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Albright 21, at Lycoming 17
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Bluffton 32, at Mount St. Joseph 31
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at Franklin 42, Defiance 12
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at Anderson 27, Earlham 16
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SUNY-Maritime 38, at Merchant Marine 31
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Concordia-Chicago 41, at Kalamazoo 29
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at Rose-Hulman 38, Hanover 28
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John Carroll 24, at Baldwin Wallace 21
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at Otterbein 56, Wilmington 28
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Trinity (Texas) 28, at Millsaps 26
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at Buena Vista 39, Central 38
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at Concordia-Moorhead 31, Bethel 7
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St. John's 56, at St. Olaf 7
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Gustavus Adolphus 42, at Augsburg 37
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Coe 35, at Nebraska Wesleyan 25
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Wartburg 40, at Simpson 31
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Elmhurst 23, at North Park 20
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at Huntingdon 41, N.C. Wesleyan 30
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at Hardin-Simmons 55, Louisiana College 10
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UW-River Falls 30, at Missouri Baptist 3
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at Whitworth 53, La Verne 0
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St. Thomas 63, at Carleton 0
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Denison 62, at Allegheny 26
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Lewis and Clark 40, at Pomona-Pitzer 29
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at Wittenberg 34, Oberlin 0
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at Western Connecticut 37, Plymouth State 29
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Washington and Lee 24, at Claremont-Mudd-Scripps 14
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Cancelled
Warner at Pacific Lutheran
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Cal Lutheran 28, at Willamette 13
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Mary Hardin-Baylor 24, at Linfield 3
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at George Fox 13, Redlands 10
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at Mass-Dartmouth 51, Westfield State 26
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at Castleton 28, Norwich 14
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at Berry 34, Rhodes 13
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Brockport 38, at St. John Fisher 7
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at WPI 38, Becker 0
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at Adrian 62, Rockford 7
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Frostburg State 33, at Christopher Newport 30
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at Hobart 56, Shenandoah 30
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at Case Western Reserve 42, Grove City 10
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at Davidson 42, Guilford 21
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at Bridgewater 52, The Apprentice School 0
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at Capital 39, Muskingum 28
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at Washington and Jefferson 37, Thomas More 29
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at North Central (Ill.) 26, Illinois Wesleyan 13
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at McMurry 33, Howard Payne 21
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at Dubuque 27, Loras 24
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at Wheaton (Ill.) 37, Carthage 14
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at Texas Lutheran 37, Belhaven 0
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at Carroll 28, Augustana 25
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St. Vincent 31, at Geneva 27
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East Texas Baptist 28, at Southwestern 10
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Cancelled
Pacific at Occidental
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Sep. 16: All times Eastern
Final
Wesley 33, at TCNJ 0
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at Johns Hopkins 37, Moravian 7
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at Alfred 24, Utica 17
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Final
UW-Platteville 38, at Hampden-Sydney 29
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Mount Union 69, at Marietta 3
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John Carroll 24, at Baldwin Wallace 21
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at Hardin-Simmons 55, Louisiana College 10
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Final
St. John's 56, at St. Olaf 7
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at Concordia-Moorhead 31, Bethel 7
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Final
at Whitworth 53, La Verne 0
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Final
St. Thomas 63, at Carleton 0
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Final
at Wittenberg 34, Oberlin 0
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Final
Mary Hardin-Baylor 24, at Linfield 3
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Final
at George Fox 13, Redlands 10
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Final
Brockport 38, at St. John Fisher 7
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Frostburg State 33, at Christopher Newport 30
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at Case Western Reserve 42, Grove City 10
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at Washington and Jefferson 37, Thomas More 29
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at Wheaton (Ill.) 37, Carthage 14
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at North Central (Ill.) 26, Illinois Wesleyan 13
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