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Warriors put on a show for pros


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POSTED: Friday, April 03, 2009

David Veikune's ability to rush the passer got him noticed in college.

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Hawaii's pro day gave the former Warriors defensive end a chance to show off a more hidden talent.

“;I'm not going to lie, I've got hands,”; he said.

Veikune was among more than a dozen former Warriors who performed for the pro scouts at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., yesterday, one of their last opportunities to impress NFL personnel prior to the draft on April 25 and 26.

Veikune ran the 40-yard dash in 4.78 seconds and went through position drills as an outside linebacker, catching passes as he dropped into coverage.

Veikune didn't have much chance to have balls thrown at him while charging upfield as a defensive end with the Warriors. But he could end up as a linebacker in a 3-4 system in the pros.

“;I've only been doing linebacker drills for a month, and I wanted to show I'm athletic enough to play linebacker,”; said Veikune, who worked with UH associate coach Rich Miano on defensive back drills in his preparation for pro day.

“;It's different from having a hand on the ground and just trying to blow up the quarterback,”; Veikune said. “;You have to drop into open space. It's been different, but its fun learning a new position.”;

Both Miano, UH's liaison to the NFL, and UH head coach Greg McMackin attended the pro day, which drew 50 to 60 coaches and scouts.

“;Rich Miano does an unbelievable job with this,”; McMackin said. “;It really was an impressive deal. ... We're really proud of our guys. It was just a class event.”;

Cornerback Ryan Mouton, Veikune's roommate during their stay in Los Angeles, covered 11 feet in the broad jump. Only three players went that far in the NFL combine in February.

But as in the combine, a pesky hamstring injury again hampered Mouton in the 40-yard dash. He again aggravated the injury in the second half of his run and hobbled across the finish line. Still, he finished in 4.42 seconds.

“;I guess that's a good time, but it's frustrating because I feel like I could do better,”; Mouton said. “;(His hamstring) felt good, but you never know until you run full speed.”;

Long snapper Jake Ingram, considered the top prospect at his position, got a thorough workout from the scouts, his agent, Wynn Silberman, said. Along with snapping, Ingram was tested on his ability to get downfield in coverage by a Cincinnati Bengals scout who worked him out for 35 minutes.

McMackin said defensive tackle Josh Leonard helped boost his profile by running a 4.9 in the 40 and bench-pressing 225 pounds 41 times. The highest total at the combine was 39.

He said linebacker Adam Leonard also performed well in the position drills, as did defensive linemen Fale Laeli and Francis Maka, who worked with the linebackers.

Linebacker Solomon Elimimian, UH's all-time leader in tackles, was also bothered by a tight hamstring. But he checked in at 225 pounds and went though the workout, despite aggravating his hamstring in the 40.

“;He really gutted it out,”; Silberman said. “;We were proud of him today, it was a very gritty performance.

“;The scouts were aware of the injury and they were impressed that he gutted it out.”;

Veikune went from Los Angeles to Philadelphia last night to meet with the Eagles, and Kenny Zuckerman, the agent for Veikune and Mouton, said he also has visits scheduled with Miami and Tennessee. Mouton has visits with Jacksonville, Miami and Cleveland coming up later this month.