April 1, 2017

Cardinals host NFL Pro Day

Brandon Radcliff carries the ball during the first quarter.

By Dalton Ray–

Weeks away from the NFL Draft, Louisville hosted their annual Pro Day for NFL scouts and coaches March 30.

The Cardinals had 19 players participate, including Keith Kelsey, Cole Hikutini, Josh Harvey-Clemons and Brandon Radcliff. Thirty of 32 teams were represented.

Receiver Jamari Staples said it’s nerve-racking.

“It’s a surreal moment. At the age of six, (I) always told himself ‘I’m going to be in the NFL.’ Then all of a sudden, (I’m) meeting with teams and GMs,” Staples said.

Staples transferred from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and totaled 1,901 yards and 10 touchdowns in his career.

Hikutini said now that school is over, there is only one thing for him and his former teammates to focus on.

“It’s what we all dream of. All we have to do is work out, eat, sleep and play football. No more school, no more study hall, no more going to classes, we just get to do what we love,” Hikutini said. “We’re not there yet, but we’re getting closer and closer and it’s really exciting.”

Hikutini recorded 1,006 yards and 11 touchdowns as a Cardinal after transferring from Sacramento State.

Radcliff said he has been preparing for the little things in his position.

“At this level, NFL scouts expect every guy to know how to run, but not everyone can pass protect. That’s something they’re looking for running backs to do. Protect the quarterback, know your reads and protections when you’re coming out of the backfield. That was something I was trying to show and get on the board to show my knowledge of picking up blitzes,” Radcliff said.

Playing for former coach Charlie Strong and current coach Bobby Petrino, Radcliff’s 2,365 career rushing yards is ninth in program history.

Hikutini, Kelsey, Harvey-Clemson, DeAngelo Brown and Devonte Fields are all considered late-round selections.

File photo / The Louisville Cardinal

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