The spring semester is in session at the University of Iowa and that means the resumption of workouts for the Iowa Hawkeyes. But while the team has turned its focus to the 2020 season, there are former Hawkeyes working to have a future playing football in 2020.
One such player is cornerback Michael Ojemudia. Lost amidst all the talk about high draft picks and early entries from Tristan Wirfs, A.J. Epenesa, Amani Hooker and to a lesser extent Toren Young, Ojemudia and quarterback Nate Stanley are gone due to graduation. Both are likely to be drafted.
Ojemudia is working to improve his draft stock by participating in the Reese’s Senior Bowl. The game is at 1:30pm CT this Saturday on the NFL Network. In the lead up to the game, there are Senior Bowl practices all week long.
It sounds as if the former 2-star linebacker prospect from Michigan is doing well in those practices. Midway through the week, he’s graded out as the best cornerback on either team.
The highest-graded CB's in the Senior Bowl pic.twitter.com/Sjyazo9Vfd— PFF Draft (@PFF_College) January 23, 2020
That’s and impressive feat for a guy who was unheralded out of high school and played a different position at the prep level. Perhaps as important as the on field performance for some analysts is how Ojemudia measured up in a literal sense early on. As absurd as that sounds, we’ve seen Iowa stats like Desmond King, Josh Jackson and Amani Hooker perform with the best in the country on the field, only to be drafted later based on measurables.
Ojemudia passed that test when he came in north of 6’ tall with a wingspan over 6’5”.
Name: Michael Ojemudia— Connor Livesay (@ConnorNFLDraft) January 21, 2020
That will be good enough to classify him as a true outside corner come draft day. While he’s yet to show any top end speed in the 40 or the shuttle, his film should show the versatility to give teams options if they do take OJ.
That’s one reason at least a few draft analysts have taken notice of the former Hawkeye, noting his potential upside.
An excellent sleeper of a player that’s at the Senior Bowl but getting no buzz is Iowa CB Michael Ojemudia.— Nick Farabaugh (@FarabaughFB) January 20, 2020
Shown off good ball skills and has good length, but the most impressive thing that stands out about him is his football IQ. His route recognition is fantastic.
Ojemudia has been getting plenty of practice off the field with the media. A number of analysts have noted his comments on playing press coverage and remarked as his football IQ. In particular, scouts have seemed to like his ability to read routes while seeing through to the QB.
He talks all that and more here.
The Senior Bowl is comprised of college players who graduated this year. That includes athletes who were not traditional seniors. One such example is former Iowa RB commit Eno Banjamin. Benjamin departed Arizona State after just his true junior year, but completed his degree in 2.5 years and is this eligible.
Ojemudia will be competing for the North Team, which is primarily made up of former players from the Big Ten, ACC, PAC-12 and Notre Dame. They’ll face off against player from the South Team, which is primarily players from the SEC, Big 12 and ACC.
Ojemudia is the only former Hawkeye participating in the Senior Bowl this year.
What: Reese’s Senior Bowl
Location: Mobile, AL
Time: 1:30pm CT
TV: NFL Network