May 2, 2007

NFL draft is a barometer

Next to wins and losses, a program's ability to send players to the next level might be the most accurate barometer of that program's health.

Need proof? The National Champion Florida Gators had the most players selected in last weekend's draft - nine. That number included a pair of first-rounders.

Oklahoma State had a pair of players selected in last weekend's 2007 NFL Draft. That's up from just one (offensive tackle Charlie Johnson) in the '06 draft, but still not at the level of the drafts from 2003-05. Not coincidentally, the 2002-04 OSU football seasons were the highest level of achievement the school had seen since the 1980's.

Defensive lineman Ryan McBean was the first Cowboy taken, going in the fourth round (132nd overall) to the Pittsburgh Steelers. Offensive tackle Corey Hilliard landed with the New England Patriots in the sixth round.

That the two players selected were linemen is notable, because over the last 30 years - with a few notable exceptions - OSU has tended to send mostly skill position players to the NFL.

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