CHAMPAIGN (WCIA) — Six former Illini attended the Illinois Football Pro Day, as they hoped to impress the 30 NFL scouts in Champaign, ahead of the 2020 Draft. They started the day with lifting and vertical testing, before heading out to the turf for drills. The six participants included Oluwole Betiku, Dele Harding, Reggie Corbin, Dre Brown, Stanley Green, and Tymir Oliver.
Betiku is chasing his NFL dreams after announcing in January to forgo his final season of eligibility. The defensive end transferred to Illinois from USC. During the 2019 season, he led the Illini in sacks with nine, and 13 total tackles for loss. He started ten games, but missed three due to an injury. He decided this was the year to declare for the NFL draft.
“It’s going to be tough, you bet on yourself. That’s how I feel about myself, I’m willing to make the sacrifices to be a pro,” says Betiku. “I’ve got family, I haven’t been back home in seven years. I haven’t seen my dad in seven years, I haven’t seen my brother in seven years, so at this point in my life I already graduated, so it’s about time I tried out for the next level.”
Former Illinois Linebacker Dele Harding was another defensive player participating . Haring ended his career at Illinois with a stellar senior season with 153 tackles, and 3 interceptions Harding also competed in the 2020 Shrine Bowl along with running back Reggie Corbin.
“I kinda believed I was destined for moments like these, and I’m so close,” says Harding. “I’ve done what I can do, and right now it’s up to God.”
“[I have] Jitters for sure, but it’s fun, it’s all fun,” says Corbin. “I’ll be able to look back and say I did this, and hopefully I did what I was supposed to do.”
The 2020 NFL Draft starts on Thursday April 23rd.