Rashaun Woods Diary #2 This (the NFL Combine) is the major event for me leading up to the draft. The combine is what I've been working toward. I did not play in any of the postseason all star games like the Senior Bowl. I felt like my ability to play football was not a question. If there was anything that would me it was to work on my drills, things I don't have a chance to work on during the season. Drills like my 40-yard dash, my 20-yard shuttle, and all those drills that they are going to have me do at the combine. I felt like if I were to improve those that would help my stock a lot more than me just going out and proving I could catch the ball from somebody. I felt that the risk of injury in one of those games was not worth the reward that I might have from playing well. I just chose to work toward the combine and I'm glad that I did.
When you have such a big event coming up the best place to be is to come home before it. You never forget where you come from. You never do things out of the ordinary. One of the things that I always liked to do before a game was talk to Mom and Dad and, if possible, come home. Be able to sit down and, kind of, relax, mentally and physically before going on to the venue.
Athlete's Performance (training facility in Arizona) has prepared me very well. I feel very confident, and I know I am going to go in and do some things that people don't expect me to do. I'm ready, probably as ready as I've ever been for something like this. I can't wait.
I've heard a lot about the mental phase of the combine and the psychological tests that teams will have you take while you are there. I really feel like I have an advantage over a lot of players in that they havn't had the experience with the media that I have. They may not know how to talk to people in certain situations, but I feel this will be more of the same for me. Yes, this time they will be NFL head coaches and pyschologists, but I've been in many of those situations before. All of those experiences that I had speaking to groups like the FCA and church groups, speaking with the media. Those are all experiences that come back to benefit you.Those situations in essence prepare you. You may have been nervous then, but they help you not to be as nervous in experiences like the ones that I will have this weekend. Those previous experiences make it easier and easier.
One of the things I said before I came back for my senior year was that I wanted to imporve on my draft status by coming back and not leaving my junior year. My junior year I was told that I would be somewhere around a second round pick. I hear how Mel Kiper talks about a lot of guys that if they had left early would have been higher round picks. I want to prove that wrong. I don't think guys look at that decision long term. I want to show that you can improve yourself. I want to do better than a second round pick, and if I get drafted in the first round then I think I will have proven something. There are guys that will be taller, but I know how to play the game, and I feel confident and I will be able to show that in the combine.
I understand the meaning of the combine and the purpose for it. I think the biggest thing about it is the scouts and coaches can't really measure the intangibles of a player. They look at a player and see he is 6-3 and makes plays, another is 6-2 and he makes great plays, and another player is 6-5 and makes great plays. They are unable to see the intangibles that make them all great players. Yes, they have speed, they can catch, and they can run. There is something else, that added charisma or something that guy that changes him from a good player to a great player. They use the combine as maybe an articifial way of determining that. They get a close up of all the players and a chance to see what players have that extra something. Those scouts and coaches that can spot that and know what they are seeing, abviously their program is going tob e very good. I think because of that the combine will always rule.
Editor's Note: As a bonus we asked Rashaun Woods to discuss two topics. With the basketball team's bedlam sweep this season, we asked Rashaun about his bedlam memories, and we asked him about his thoughts on quarterback Josh Fields and whether he follows Josh's career in baseball, which started with the Cowboy baseball season last weekend as Fields had a double and home run in the opening weekend's games with Eastern Michigan.
I have had a lot of memories at Oklahoma State but two of the greatest were the wins over Oklahoma my sophomore and junior seasons. My junior season our whole team was in a zone, everything we did we executed to perfection. It seemed like every play the coaches called seemed like the right play for the situation we were in. The whole Oklahoma State staff, the players, the whole OSU program was in a zone in that game.
Josh is a great guy and I'm very glad that I had a chance to catch balls from him. He's a guy that when you look at players and look at their intangibles and what makes them so good. He's one of those guys that has it. You don't really know what "it" is, but he seems to get the job done no matter what the circumstances and I admire him for it. I look forward to following his career in baseball or whatever he does. I know he will be a success, and yes, as much as I can, I follow what Josh does in baseball. It would be great if we both went on to have a lot of success in the NFL and Major League Baseball..
Rashaun Woods Diary (Week 2)
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