LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Louisville held its annual Pro Day Wednesday Tuesday afternoon at the Trager indoor practice facility. Ten former Cardinals, including six seniors and one junior from the 2012 team, auditioned in front of National Football League scouts in preparation for the upcoming NFL Draft.
Twenty-five NFL personnel representing 22 teams and one scout from the Canadian Football League attended the event.
Senior Adrian Bushell, Louisville’s lone invitee to the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, participated in drills for scouts and coaches. Bushell measured in at 5-9 and 190 pounds, and recorded a 31-inch vertical leap.
“I felt like everything went like it was supposed to go,” said Bushell. “I worked hard and I had to come out and show it.”
Bushell, who ran a 4.5 40-yard dash, isn’t going to wow scouts with impressive times, but he has illustrated his effectiveness on the field. A transfer from
Florida, Bushell was a two-time all-BIG EAST performer and enjoyed his best season this year in guiding the Cardinals to an 11-2 record and a win over third ranked Florida in the Sugar Bowl.
A two-year starter, Bushell posted a career-high 62 tackles this year and recorded a team-best 13 pass break-ups.
“The game tape is what stands out and separates you from the rest,” said Bushell. “Everyone can come out and look good in shorts, but it counts when you turn on the game tape.”
For the six former Cardinals who weren't invited to the NFL Combine - running back Jeremy Wright, center Mario Benavides, offensive tackle Alex Kupper, linebacker Daniel Brown, fullback Bo Eggers and wide receiver Andrell Smith was their chance to showcase their skills to nearly every team in the league.
Junior running back Jeremy Wright, who chose to forgo his senior season, was also in attendance for a chance to impress the NFL scouts.
Benavides and Kupper were the two other seniors from 2012 who worked out on Tuesday afternoon. The tandem combined to start 75 games for the Cardinals during their career and was solid in their workout. Benavides started 13 games last season and was a first team all-league award winner, while Kupper registered 13 starts and earned second team accolades.
“I’m not a workout warrior,” said Kupper. “I’m did average on things, but in position drills I did pretty well. I showed I’m flexible for a team who needs flexibility.”
Wright, who led the Cardinals in rushing last season with 824 yards and 10 touchdowns, was impressive in his workout, running a solid 4.47 in the 40-yard dash and a 35 ½ in the vertical jump.
“The last couple of months have been hard,” said Wright. “I’ve been training really hard to get ready for this day. This is a totally different mindset. You only get a few opportunities. The window is very small and you have very little room for error. There are a lot of people around the world competing so you just have to remain focused and worked hard.”
The 2013 NFL Draft will be conducted April 25-27 (Thursday, April 25 - first round; Friday, April 26 - second and third rounds; and Saturday, April 27 - fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh rounds) at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.