Fredericksburg High School athlete Brayden Beard was among many attendees at SMU's mini camp on June 1. But no one stuck out more than the senior-to-be, who blew away everyone at the camp with 40-yard dash times of 4.24 and 4.28.
"It felt good," Beard said. "I really didn't expect those times; I expected something in the 4.3s. When I went 4.2, I was pretty excited. I knew right then I'd open eyes and I'd stepped into a level not a lot of kids have stepped into."
Beard has trained for a long time in anticipation for the summer; he has worked with Peak Fitness Kerrville's Duane Shortt for the past three months.
"We've done strength training and work on the VertiMax almost four days a week," he explained." That's really helped boost (my) speed."
Beard previously told PonyStampede that he would run for a lot of teams this summer, and if he ran a 4.4 or below, he would get an offer. He said that SMU was one of those teams. But as of June 3, SMU has not offered. However, Beard remains hopeful they will.
"They've got two commitments at wide receiver, so I'm hoping they give me the offer as an athlete, or there may be a third wide receiver spot" he said.
SMU received a commitment from South Oak Cliff wide receiver Lamont Johnson during the camp, and Beard thinks that kept the SMU coaches' attention. He said the coaches did not say much about an offer.
"I think the coaches were really happy about (Johnson's commitment), so I don't know how much forward they were looking after getting their second commit," Beard explained. "I don't know how serious they are about giving me an offer, I guess we'll have to see. I definitely liked everything though; I think (the camp) was my fourth time being on campus. Of course I'm interested in them, it's just seeing how interested they will be back in me. I'm hoping to hear a call from them pretty soon just to let me know where I stand on their board."
Beard said his recruitment has started to heat up in the last couple weeks, and it is sure to take off after posting the jaw-dropping forty time.
"I've heard from a couple SEC schools, although I'm not supposed to throw the names out yet. I've heard from a Big 12 schools or two. I'm really hoping I hear an offer pretty soon from teams from either conference.
"I'm hoping the 4.2 really goes viral, and schools open their eyes and I start pulling some offers. I can run with the best of them, so I hope coaches will see that and get past my size and give me an offer to come play as an athlete and find a fit for me in their system."
Beard will run at Tulsa on June 7, and he said he expects an offer from Tulsa as long as he runs well.
"They said if I just run a 4.5 or 4.4, I should expect an offer. I go to UTSA and Rice, and they said the same thing," Beard added. "If any of the other schools contact me wanting me to come run for them, then I'll go to those. I hope the SEC and one of the Big 12 schools calls me. I hope they throw an offer out without me having to go to the camp, but I'm willing to prove myself to anyone."
Beard's brother, Bryce, a 2016 wide receiver, was also at the SMU camp and ran 40-yard times of 4.33 and 4.38.