As John Chick first gathered with the 30 or so other football prospects at Valley Ranch Monday afternoon, one of the first things he noticed were all the gaudy rings the recent college players were wearing.
There were National Championship rings and bowl rings being sported everywhere. But what do you expect when the players are from some of the biggest programs in the country.
Chick, however, doesn't have any rings and doesn't come from a big-time football school. Nonetheless, the Utah State defensive end was still one of the players invited to partake in the Dallas Cowboys' gathering of potential draftees.
And while probably 95 percent of all football fans have no clue what conference Utah State plays in, Chick, 23, doesn't have an inferiority complex. He believes, and rightly so, that he belongs with the likes of Ohio State linebacker Bobby Carpenter and USC offensive lineman Winston Justice.
"Generally, I'm a pretty quiet guy," he said. "It was interesting to see people from all the big-name schools and people wearing their rings. A lot of people really don't know who I am, but I think I stand out. My numbers definitely speak for themselves."
As a senior for the Aggies, Chick was named First-Team All-Western Athletic Conference.
The 6-foot-4, 257-pounder ranked fifth in the NCAA in sacks per game at 1.14 and ninth in the country in tackles for loss with 1.73. His 12.5 sacks were the second most in WAC history and his 19 tackles for loss, tied for fourth in conference history.
His 48 tackles are fifth among the league's down linemen. He closed the year with a seven-tackle, three-sack game at New Mexico State.
To play at the next level, some NFL scouts believe Chick would best fit as an outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense, which is why the Cowboys brought him in to get closer look.
"I met with the position coaches, the head coach and the owner," he said. "They just showed us the facilities and they let us know they were interested in us. It was hard to know what to expect because when you see them on TV, they don't seem like real people.
"But they brought me down with all those other big names. It was a very good experience."
Chick arrived at Valley Ranch Monday afternoon around 4 o'clock and left almost exactly 24 hours later. He may visit with the Seattle Seahawks in the next few days, but he was unable to confirm those plans at the present time.
LB Talks About Valley Ranch Visit
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