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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Arizona Wildcats figure to go undrafted in 2015 NFL Draft

Arizona+football+wide+receiver+Austin+Hill+%2829%29+looks+to+avoid+defenders+during+Arizonas+49-45+victory+over+California+on+Sep.+20%2C+2014+at+Arizona+Stadium.+Hill+is+among+a+handful+of+Wildcats+who+will+likely+go+undrafted+during+the+NFL+Draft.

Arizona football wide receiver Austin Hill (29) looks to avoid defenders during Arizona’s 49-45 victory over California on Sep. 20, 2014 at Arizona Stadium. Hill is among a handful of Wildcats who will likely go undrafted during the NFL Draft.

College athletes will have the opportunity to shine in the limelight and make their way up to the next level in the upcoming 2015 NFL Draft at the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University in Chicago. Many have worked their entire lives for this moment. Unfortunately, some might not even hear their names called between tonight and Saturday.

In most of the latest NFL seven-round mock drafts, no Wildcats are predicted to be called. It might not come as a surprise since, “no team in the country has won more games over the past three seasons with fewer NFL [Draft] picks than the Arizona Wildcats,” according to The Arizona Republic.

Three Wildcats heard their name called last season: Ka’Deem Carey, Shaquille Richardson and Marquis Flowers.

Flowers made appearances in 16 games for the Cincinnati Bengals as linebacker, while Carey played in 14 games for the Chicago Bears and rushed for 158 yards.

Austin Hill is perhaps the most notable prospect amongst former Wildcats who may hear their name called in one of the seven draft rounds this year.

The 6-foot-2 receiver from Corona, Calif., played four seasons for Arizona and suffered an ACL injury in 2013. Many analysts thought he might be a top-50 NFL prospect after his 2012 campaign.

According to Dane Brugler from CBS Sports, Hill is a “solid-framed athlete with adequate height and length for the position.” But Brugler lists his weaknesses as “leaner than ideal, lacking preferred muscle and bulk for his frame.”

Analysts have consistently said they are afraid of Hill’s injury history and that he hasn’t fully recovered to his pre-injury form.

NFL.com predicts Hill to be a round-seven selection or priority-free agent and compared him to the San Diego Chargers’ wide receiver, Austin Pettis.

Hill had a solid pro day back in March, finishing with a 4.57 40-yard dash and a 36.5-inch vertical jump. Plus, he has proven he can make big plays — remember the Hill Mary?

Mickey Baucus, one of the most consistent members of Arizona’s offensive line and a four-year starter, is predicted by NFL.com to go undrafted. The 6-foot-8 Baucus was dependable throughout his Wildcat career, but NFL scouts don’t believe it will translate to the next level. According to Lance Zierlein of NFL.com, Baucus “[doesn’t] appear to have the traits or talent to make it to the NFL.”

Former Wildcats Steven Gurrola, Jared Tevis, Dan Pettinato and Tra’Mayne Bondurant are all predicted to go undrafted this year as well. All had pretty impressive senior seasons and could make a name for themselves overseas or in the Arena Football League if they are not drafted.

No matter what happens this weekend, athletes should rest easy. Stars like Kurt Warner, Jeff Saturday, Wes Welker, Antonio Gates and Warren Moon all have one major theme in common: None of them were drafted. In fact, Arizona Cardinals’ hero Warner was stocking shelves at a grocery store and took his route to the NFL by starting in the AFL.

Crazy things seem to happen every year at the NFL Draft. Hopefully this year, luck will go the Wildcats way.

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Follow Matt Wall on Twitter.

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