On Dec. 3, 2016, Trace McSorley captured MVP honors at Lucas Oil Stadium, leading the Nittany Lions to a Big Ten title. In a few weeks, he’ll get another chance to prove himself in Indianapolis.
The 2019 NFL Scouting Combine released its full list of 338 participants on Thursday, and McSorley made the cut. So did six other Nittany Lions: Running back Miles Sanders, cornerback Amani Oruwariye, offensive linemen Connor McGovern and Ryan Bates, defensive tackle Kevin Givens and EDGE rusher Shareef Miller.
The Combine, which takes place from Feb. 26 through March 4, will be critical for all seven Nittany Lions in different ways.
For McSorley, the three-year starter and Penn State record-holder is one of 17 quarterbacks invited to Indianapolis. McSorley, who performed well in practices down at the Senior Bowl, is not listed in Mel Kiper Jr.’s most recent top-10 quarterback rankings. This will be an opportunity for McSorley to make up some ground on the likes of Northwestern’s Clayton Thorson, Washington State’s Gardner Minshew and Auburn’s Jarrett Stidham.
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Sanders also missed the cut for Kiper’s most recent top-10 running back rankings. He is one of 29 running backs invited to the Combine.
McGovern and Oruwariye — the No. 4 guard and No. 8 cornerback on Kiper’s list, respectively — can bolster their already strong draft stock. Miller is a sleeper candidate to break out in Indianapolis, while Givens and Bates — two surprising early departures — are late-round prospects looking to make names for themselves.
Of course, the Nittany Lions have a recent history of performing well at the Combine. Strength and conditioning coach Dwight Galt garnered praise last year when safety Troy Apke blew NFL legend Deion Sanders away with a 4.35-second 40-yard dash and athletic freaks Saquon Barkley and Mike Gesicki did their thing.
McSorley, Sanders, Oruwariye and company will look to generate the same kind of headlines in a few weeks.
The Combine will be aired on NFL Network. Live workouts for running backs and offensive linemen will take place Friday, March 1, followed by quarterbacks on March 2, defensive linemen on March 3 and defensive backs on March 4.