Cloninger Soundoff: Gamecocks’ results show flaws in NFL draft system

Posted by DAVID CLONINGER on May 10, 2014 

Kelcy Quarles


It’s not a bias, it’s not ignoring and who knows if it’s about the nightclub incident that both were cleared in.

It’s mostly about the NFL Draft system being what it is – unfair.

Underclassmen receive advice from their NFL about what their projected grade will be in the upcoming NFL Draft. Using that advice, they decide if it’s a good bet to bypass their final years of college.

The problem is the projections come in in December. The draft is in May. Between there are workouts, interviews and all kinds of time to move up or down.

The projections never take those into account, so how accurate can they be? But they’re the only gauge the players have when deciding whether or not to go. So when Kelcy Quarles and Victor Hampton were projected to go in the third or fourth round, it seemed a solid bet to leave.

Each did leave and each didn’t hear their name called on Saturday. Each can pursue free agency in the NFL – and it can work, as Terry Cousin can attest – but it’s not nearly the solid ground that a draft pick is.

In college baseball, the draft happens during the postseason and players can then decide if they want to stay or go. It would be a wise system to adopt for all sports.

But those other sports don’t have nearly the scrutiny or representatives coming around college campuses during the seasons, cooing to players that they should go for the money now. The NFL is big bucks. Everybody sees it, and every player knows that they’re good enough to earn some of it.

The reality is, they’re not. But many tell them that anyway.

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