Embody Evaluations

Managing Editor Billy Embody takes a closer look at new SMU offerees

Chad Pursley- OL, Mansfield Legacy

Athleticism/Technique: Not only is Pursley a good football player, but his athleticism has allowed him to be a standout basketball player as well. That has helped him with his footwork and side-to-side quickness, which is crucial in his pass blocking. He doesn't have that great of knee bend and needs to get lower in every aspect of his game to not allow opponents to get him off balance.

Pass Blocking: Due to Pursley's athleticism, he is able to stay with opponents' pass rushers fairly easily. At the next level, he'll have to bulk up to avoid being bull rushed by opponents though. What is important is when Pursley adds more weight, is that his feet stay good and quick since that will be an important part of his game. He needs to stay lower and that will come with coaching since Pursley is so athletic.

Run Blocking: Pursley is just average at getting off the ball and isn't able to really over power opponents often, but he does a good job at getting his hands inside for the most part. He does have trouble staying low so on some plays, and he's not always the most under control run blocker. When he gets going he is focused on driving through the players that sometimes, he is off balance. Another plus is with his athleticism, he can pull and be a mobile lineman.

Side Note: Pursley's recruiter Tommy Poynter, came to SMU and gained over 50 pounds to be able to play offensive line, something Pursley will have to do as well.

Offers: Only offer is SMU and he is committed.




HT: 6-4

WT: 245

20-Yard Shuttle: 4.46

40-Yard Dash: 4.72

Garrett Gray- WR, Marble Falls

Route Running: When you watch Gray come off the ball, you see him run his routes under control, but he is explosive as well even for a player with his size. Even though Gray is explosive off the ball, he could be a little quicker out of his break to the post. Gray does a good job of being able to get yards after the catch, but on his hitch routes could come back to the ball more. Against FBS corners, this will be key to making sure that corners cannot step in front of short passes.

Hands and Technique: With Gray's 6-foot-5 frame, he is a prime target for jump balls and goes up consistently to the highest point to bring the ball in. Gray consistently catches the ball with his hands and does a good job looking the ball in. Gray uses his body well to set defensive backs and gain separation. When you watch his film, you can tell Gray has worked tirelessly on each route.

Blocking: With Gray's size, he is easily able to outmuscle defenders, but what is more impressive is that he stays low so that he is able to keep smaller opponents in front of him and without them being able to get by him. Gray also shows a passion for helping his teammates down the field by going to the next level once the ball carrier is past his initial block.

Side Note: In September, Gray caught 13 passes for 294 yards and five touchdowns in a 62-55 win against Boerne Champion.

Offers: Iowa, Iowa State, Minnesota, Oregon State, California, Tulsa, Minnesota, Rice, Houston and SMU.




HT: 6-5

WT: 205

40-Yard Dash: 4.43

Vontre McQuinnie- S/OLB, Lancaster

Athleticism/Tackling: McQuinnie is extremely comfortable in the box and can plug gaps really well, which could help him whether he ends up coming down from his safety position or if he bulks up, from the linebacker position. He wants to hit on every play and will go 100 percent to do just that, but sometimes it leads to him being out of control and hoping to make a tackle with his athletic ability. He has the physical frame to bulk up and be a successful player at the next level, but it will be up to the staff where to put him.

Coverage: McQuinnie shows good zone turns but can struggle a little bit in man-to-man because he is not as comfortable swinging his hips and running with receivers. He definitely has the size to match up against tight ends in the slot, which will help coaches game plan against better tight ends at the next level. McQuinnie may lack the elite speed to keep up with slots, but he can surely play the tight end well.

Against the Run: McQuinnie is not afraid to stick his nose in and help out in run support. With all the talent on his team, McQuinnie, who has called himself the quarterback of his defense, knows that he can take chances, but when he does take them, they are well calculated in his mind. With some more bulk, he could be utilized on blitzes a fair amount at the next level. He does a good job of shedding blocks by using his hands and strength so he can get to the ball carrier.

Side Note: McQuinnie is taking his visits extremely slow since he is committed to Oklahoma, but he could trip to SMU since it is so close to home.

Offers: Oklahoma, Iowa and SMU


HT: 6-1

WT: 205

20-Yard Shuttle: 4.21

Vertical Jump: 31.5"


Pony Stampede Top Stories