When Tim Cole ran in the 5-flat range in the 40-yard dash at The Opening in Oregon, you could hear the gasp all the way back to the Lone Star State. But I wouldn't put too much stock into it for two reasons: first, certain players just don't time well and second, Cole timed an elite-level shuttle time for his size (4.2 seconds).
What the former stat (40-yard dash time) tells me is that Cole isn't blazing fast when clocking in a straight line. What the latter tells me is far more important, that Cole is a fluid athlete capable of changing directions and accelerating quickly.
And that comes across both on film, and in person. Cole played the SAM spot at the International Bowl, and he showed the ability to cover the seam versus the pass. And his ability against the run at Brenham was outstanding. His quickness served him well, and he had plenty of pop upon arrival.
Cole is an instinctual player who excels at locating the ball and getting there. With his current lack of bulk, he can get swallowed up at times, though I'm not sure that will be as big an issue once he hits the weight room at the next level.
Cole is an ideal linebacker for the Manny Diaz defense, somebody always on the attack with tremendous quickness who is powerful going downhill. And while the Longhorns have some key pieces ahead of him, Cole should be an impressive player in his Texas career.