There were plenty of eyes on the 16 Mountaineers who completed their eligibility in 2012, as 29 of the 32 NFL teams were represented at WVU's Pro Day workout on Thursday at the Caperton Indoor Practice Facility in Morgantown.
Every NFL team except three -- the Dallas Cowboys
, Arizona Cardinals
and Seattle Seahawks
-- had scouts or front office personnel or coaches in attendance at the workout, held Thursday morning. The Pittsburgh Steelers
and Jacksonville Jaguars
sent their head coaches, Mike Tomlin and Gus Bradley, respectively, to the session.
They weren't the only ones. ESPN's Todd McShay and Ron Jaworski watched the workout, and an NFL Network crew was there to follow the exploits of West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith.
They all saw quite a show from Smith. The quarterback may have cemented his status as the top signal-caller in this year's draft class with an extensive throwing session. He completed 60 of 64 passes unofficially, with two of the incomplete passes coming on drops by receiver Stedman Bailey.
Another incomplete pass was simply too high -- a deep ball that required so much loft that it caught the netting that lines the ceiling of the IPF. The fourth was Smith's only truly bad throw of the day, an overthrown ball on an out pattern intended for Bailey.
Smith had a lengthy meeting with representatives from the Jaguars before meeting with reporters after his workout.
Of the four WVU players who were invited to the NFL Combine -- Smith, Bailey, Tavon Austin and Joey Madsen -- all but Bailey opted not to run any of the other drills at Pro Day. Bailey ran the 40-yard dash and the 60-yard-shuttle. His times were not listed on a sheet of results distributed to reporters after the workout.
Madsen did participate in the vertical leap and broad jump, explaining that those portions of the Combine occurred after the field work had been done, leaving him with dead legs. He posted a 27-inch vertical and an 8-foot 10-inch broad jump.
One of the stars of Pro Day was one of the Mountaineers' longtime workout warriors, former receiver Ryan Nehlen. The Morgantown native posted a 39-inch vertical leap -- only half an inch shy of the best result of any wide receiver at the Combine.
His other results were strong as well -- an 11-foot 1-inch broad jump (the best of the day by a full six inches), 11 repetitions of 225 pounds in the bench press, a 4.53 40-yard dash (tied for the day's best), one of only two sub-7.00 performances in the three-cone drill, and the best results of the day in both the 20-yard and 60-yard shuttle.
Reporters were not permitted to watch his workout, but former WVU star Pat White was back on campus for Pro Day. He did speak to the media after the session (watch the video here) and said "personal issues" led him to walk away from the game as a Miami Dolphin, but he now realizes he wants to be in and around the game "til I'm six feet under."
White hesitantly said he is open to a potential role involving playing receiver or kick returning, but emphasized "my heart is still at quarterback." To that end, he threw during his workout, but did not run.
Other numbers worth noting: offensive lineman Jeff Braun easily led the way on the bench press, with 29 reps of 225 pounds. Cecil Level tied Nehlen for the fastest 40-yard dash at 4.53 seconds. Pat Miller ran a 4.54, while J.D. Woods posted a 4.58.
Shawne Alston, Josh Francis and Terence Garvin all ran in the 4.6-range.
Nehlen and Woods were the only two prospects who posted a time of less than seven seconds in the three-cone drill.