- FREE AGENCY
REGINA — Tunde Adeleke continues turning heads at the CFL Combine presented by adidas, taking the top 40-yard dash with a 4.58.
The country’s top amateur athletes took part in one of the combine’s marquee events on Saturday morning at Evraz Place, running the 40 as well as the 3-cone drill and the short shuttle.
Carleton’s Adeleke ran the only sub-4.6 while Waterloo defensive back Jordan Hoover, originally invited from the Ontario Regional Combine, followed up with a 4.603.
“I’m happy with being the fastest guy in the room when it comes to the 40,” said Adeleke, “but you always want to strive for better. I didn’t get what I wanted to but hopefully I keep getting better.”
Adeleke was hoping to run a sub-4.5 but CFL.ca’s Marshall Ferguson said the Ravens’ DB showed what he needed to.
“Comparatively I think it’s exactly what he needed,” said Ferguson. “If he were to run a slow 40 I wouldn’t be worried but it wouldn’t fit with what I’ve seen on game tape.
“It confirms what I already thought about him, which is exactly what GMs would be looking for.”
|4||Dondre Wright||4.618||DB||Henderson State|
|> View Full Results|
Another Carleton Raven and combine favourite in Nate Behar ran a 4.61, tops out of all receivers, while Henderson State’s Dondre Wright saved his best run for last by reaching 4.618.
Behar’s performance showed why some consider him the draft’s most well-rounded prospect.
“Nate Behar continues to excel,” said Ferguson. “There’s not one thing you can point at and say it’s a definite weakness. He can do anything that you ask of him and on film everything that we’ve seen in the testing confirms the athleticism and fire he plays with.”
Wright’s 4.62, meanwhile, came after he struggled on his first run to a 4.73.
“I actually think his second 40 was relieving,” said Ferguson. “That’s a massive jump.
“It feels like the first 40 was him feeling it out and the second was him actually showing what I’ve seen on film, which is that he’ll run sideline to sideline better than most people in this draft.”
Harland Hastings out of Acadia rounded out the top-five with a 4.64.
While they didn’t land in the top five, offensive and defensive linemen also had plenty to gain from the 40 on Saturday morning. Laurier’s Kwaku Boateng ran a 4.90 while Calgary’s Connor McGough ran an eye-opening 4.74, among other strong numbers from what’s considered a smaller group of linemen.
“I think the theme for the defensive line group is the height and weights are a little bit smaller than in year’s past,” said Ferguson. “So you have to weigh those things in relation to the 40 times.
“Connor McGough ran a great number and Kwaku Boateng was equally excellent but both of them have to be evaluated under the context that they are smaller guys.”
While the 40 is Saturday’s big ticket event, particularly important for the linemen were the short shuttle and 3-cone. While Wright, the defensive back, won the day with the top shuttle of 4.06, Hoover’s 4.03 from the regional combine stands as the top time.
McGough, meanwhile, ran a 4.25 in the shuttle, tied for the best time of any lineman.
“Very happy,” said McGough afterwards. “I came in here with a goal of beating my times from the East-West or getting the same results and I feel like I did that here today.”
McGough and other linemen can now look forward to one-on-ones, where they’ll go against the best in the country with everyone watching.
“I’m looking forward to just competing,” he said. “There are a lot of linemen that are projected to go really high. I enjoy facing guys that are projected to go high or have a lot of hype around them.
“It’s just good competition,” McGough added. “It makes you work harder and it makes you better at the end of the day. I’m looking forward to facing some O-linemen that are said to be very good.”
The CFL Combine wraps up Saturday with the 40-yard dash, short shuttle and 3-cone, followed by one-on-ones later in the day. Click here for full results.