A number of college hoopers that saw their careers come to a close this season now have a chance to turn themselves into professional athletes on the gridiron.
Bruce Ellington, who was once a promising point guard on South Carolina, was picked in the fourth round by the San Francisco 49ers as a receiver. Demetri Goodson, who once won an NCAA tournament game at the buzzer for Gonzaga, was picked in the sixth round by the Green Bay Packers. He played cornerback for Baylor. Indianapolis is trying to land the next Jimmy Graham as they signed former Miami power forward Erik Swoope to a free agent contract.
Don’t be surprised if, in the coming days, you end up seeing more undersized power forwards without an NBA future turning to football.
One day, in particular, to keep an eye on is Tarik Black, the former Memphis and Kansas big man. As a senior with the Jayhawks, he struck up a random friendship with Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers, one that has Rodgers recruiting Black to join him in Green Bay. Black hasn’t been signed by an NFL team yet, but that’s not due to a lack of interest. He’s already committed to an NBA evaluation camp this weekend, according to a report from CBSSports.com, so he can’t commit to any individual team yet. He’s playing out his basketball options before resorting to football, it seems.
Rodgers knows a thing or two about basketball playing tight ends. Green Bay tight end Jermichael Finley doesn’t have the hoops pedigree of Graham, Antonio Gates or Tony Gonzalez, but he was a three-star basketball recruit coming out of high school.
Finley is no longer with the Packers are suffering a scary spine injury last season. Given Black’s lack of potential on the hardwood, maybe Rodgers has found a replacement at tight end after all.