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Multiple Bulls participate in annual pro day

Defensive lineman Thad Mangum led the Bulls’ lineman in tackles in 2021 with 34. He was one of seven players participating in Friday’s pro day. ORACLE PHOTO/ALEXANDRA URBAN

Several former members of the USF football program put their talents on display in front of professional teams Friday during the school’s annual pro day. 

Mitchell Brinkman, Blake Green, Kevin Kegler, Thad Mangum, Kelvin Pinkney and Trent Schneider all went through drills ahead of the NFL Draft that is set to begin April 28.

Eleven NFL teams were in attendance to watch the former Bulls in action, including the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Miami Dolphins, San Francisco 49ers and Los Angeles Chargers. A scout from the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian Football League was also present.

Most of the players were part of the 2021 roster, with the exception of Schneider who was the team’s punter from 2018-20. 

Along with their respective position drills, most of the players participated in the bench press, broad jump, vertical leap, 40-yard dash, short shuttle and three-cone drill.

Brinkman, a tight end during his two seasons at USF, was excited to show off his skills and hard work in front of a handful of pro scouts.

“It was a great opportunity,” he said. “Who wouldn’t want to go on to your same practice field and in the weight room where I’ve worked countless hours and just perform in front of those types of scouts and those teams? It was a great experience and a great opportunity.”

Many of the players participating Friday had been preparing for the event for a long time, looking to increase their draft stock by impressing in multiple drills. Brinkman and Mangum began their training shortly after the football season ended.

Mangum, a defensive lineman, has been training endlessly over the last few months in order to impress scouts. One of his main focuses Friday was to show his improved movement and fluidity that’s typically expected from players in his position group. 

“We’ve been training since the season ended in November, training back home in South Carolina,” he said. “[Training] like two or three times a day, going to the field, doing position work every single day, just a lot of work. That’s all there is to it, just focusing on the grind.”

For Mangum, a potential journey to the professional ranks has been a long time coming after an extensive college career, first at Wofford College in South Carolina and then at USF. He felt grateful for the opportunity that he’s received and looks forward to what lies ahead.

“It’s been a long journey,” he said. “Just thinking back over my time, it’s been seven years that I’ve been in college, back at Wofford and then coming here to USF. So I’m just blessed and thankful that I was able to be healthy and finish my career off and be able to participate in the pro day and show my skill sets.”

All of the players that participated in the pro day will be hoping to become USF’s first draft pick since 2018 when the Bulls saw Deadrin Senat and Marquez Valdez-Scantling get selected in the third and fifth round, respectively.