More than a dozen football players who suited up at Utah colleges this past season will be headed to the 2014 NFL Scouting Combine, according to a report from CBS Sports and The Sports Xchange.
While an official announcement has yet to be made, this report indicates 15 players from the state of Utah will be headed to Indianapolis for the combine on Feb. 19-24. They include five players each from BYU and Utah, four from Utah State and one from Dixie State.
Nine of the Beehive State's combine invitees are defensive players, while six play on the offensive side of the ball. The state will be well-represented at the tight end position, with four of the 22 invitees coming from Utah schools.
Two of those four tight ends invited — Jake Murphy and Anthony Denham — played at the University of Utah. Other Utes headed to the combine include linebacker Trevor Reilly, defensive tackle Tenny Palepoi and cornerback Keith McGill. McGill had an interception at the Senior Bowl recently.
Among BYU's five invitees are wide receiver Cody Hoffman, linebacker Kyle Van Noy, defensive lineman Eathyn Manumaleuna, linebacker Uani 'Unga and safety Daniel Sorensen. Hoffman and Van Noy both played in the Senior Bowl; Van Noy recorded a sack and Hoffman had a five-yard reception in the annual game.
CBS Sports also named BYU's Kaneakua Friel as one of the combine's snubs at tight end.
Utah State will be represented by two defensive players — cornerback Nevin Lawson and safety Maurice Alexander — and two offensive players — center Tyler Larsen and tight end D.J. Tialavea. Larsen played for the North team in the Senior Bowl while Lawson had an interception in the game, one week after he scored on a fumble recovery in the East-West Shrine Game.
Dixie State tight end Joe Don Duncan will be one of the representatives from smaller schools at the combine. Duncan was a Division II All-America honoree last season, catching 71 passes for 1,045 yards and 13 touchdowns. He was invited to play in the Senior Bowl and East-West Shrine Game, but an injury prevented him from doing so.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; Twitter: @brandonljudd