This story is an update of the Mirror interview with the main three Bears trying to become professional players.
University of Northern Colorado football player Zach Wilkinson showed off his Canadian pride by participating in the Canadian Football League (CFL) Combine.
Wilkinson is one of 12 offensive linemen who participated in the national combine.
Some athletes have to perform in the regional combine and hope for an invite to the national combine.
This was not an issue for Zach since he has made the top 20 list of prospects throughout the season.
Here are his drills results and what rank they were among the 11 other offensive linemen.
- Bench Press: 23 reps (5th)
- 40 Yard Dash: 5.36 sec. (4th)
- Vertical Jump: 26″ (3rd)
- Broad Jump 8′ 3.5″ (6th)
- 3 Cone: 8.00 sec. (3rd)
- Shuttle sprint: 4.79 sec. (3rd)
What the Experts Say
The two prospect rankings reports have shown that Wilkinson has done very well by placing in the top 20 in both.
In August, the CFL listed him as the 8th best prospect going into the college football season.
In December, he dropped down to 17th overall, but stayed in the top 20 even with a rough season for UNC football.
On March 19 the mock draft showed Wilkinson as the 8th overall predicted pick by Calgary.
Of course mock drafts mean very little of actual team strategy and intent, but 8th overall should bode well.
During UNC’s Pro Day the lone CFL scout was from the Edmonton Eskimos.
While scouting notes are private from the media, the scout stayed the full time and appeared impressed during one-on-one drills.
Bears History in the CFL
Wilkinson could become the fourth Bear to play in the CFL and second Bear to be drafted in the CFL.
The first Bear in the CFL was Jeff Knappe who spent a season in Calgary in 1981 as a Quarterback.
Jed Roberts was a defensive end/ linebacker who played for the Edmonton Eskimos from 1990 to 2002.
Roberts biggest achievements are being a 1993 Grey Cup Champion (Canadian Super Bowl) and having the 4th most special teams tackles.
The most recent Bear to play, and only to be drafted, is Herve Tonye-Tonye as the 24th overall pick.
While Herve played the majority of his career at Alcorn State, the CFL lists his college as Northern Colorado.
Currently, Herve is a free agent after being on three teams over four seasons in the CFL.
Despite his unstable roster spots, he did win a Grey Cup Championship by being on Ottawa’s team at the second half of the 2016 season.
Based on the scouting and performances from Wilkinson, he could be the Bears best prospect to compete in the CFL ever.
On May 2nd UNC will learn where Wilkinson will start what could be a promising CFL career.