14 Cougs currently on NFL rosters

BY OUR COUNT, 13 former Cougars are in NFL camps right now and one other –- record-setting kicker Jason Hanson -- is on the sidelines nursing an injury. Hanson is entering his 19th season in the bigs, all with Detroit. At age 40, he is one of the 10 oldest players in the league.

He recently underwent minor surgery on his non-kicking knee but is expected to be ready in time for the Lions' season opener. He holds the NFL record for most field goals of 50 yards or longer.

Two other long-time NFL Cougars aren't in uniform this season. Defensive tackle Rob Meier of the Jaguars was injured all of last season and retired over the off-season, as did offensive lineman Cory Withrow, a fixture with the Vikings for many years who spent last season on injured reserve with Seattle.

On the flip side of the age scale, just two newly minted WSU grads -- center Kenny Alfred and linebacker Andy Mattingly – got a sniff of the NFL this season. Alfred signed a free agent deal with Tennessee but was let go following mini-camp in May, and Mattingly earned a one-day tryout with the Packers in the spring but wasn't signed.

There is one new Cougar in an NFL camp this August, however. It's receiver Charles Dillon, who was a steady presence for the Cougs at receiver and return specialist from 2006-07. He signed with the Packers this past March after turning in a stellar 2009 campaign for the Spokane Shock of the Arena League.

The most talked about Cougar this August has to be Cleveland running back Jerome Harrison. He put together a monstrous second half of the 2009 season -- even breaking a Jim Brown record or two -- but his size and blocking ability still have folks questioning whether he should be Cleveland's No. 1 back.

Here's a complete list of Cougars in the NFL, as best we know it, as of today. Of note is that half of the 14 are defensive backs, giving rise to the notion that Ol' Wazzu should be dubbed DB U rather than QB U.

DB Hamza Abdullah, Cardinals
DB Husain Abdullah, Vikings
DB Tyron Brackenridge, Jaguars
DB Erik Coleman, Falcons
WR, Charles Dillon, Packers
DB Eric Frampton, Vikings
WR Brandon Gibson, Rams
K Jason Hanson, Lions
RB Jerome Harrison, Browns
WR Jason Hill, 49ers
K Rian Lindell, Bills
DB Karl Paymah, 49ers
DL Ropati Pitoitua, Jets
DB Marcus Trufant, Seahawks

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