February 28, 2007

Beekman diary: Combine a success

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Boston College offensive lineman Josh Beekman just finished a senior season in which he earned second-team All-America honors from Rivals.com. He has agreed to write a diary for Rivals.com as he gets ready for the draft.

In this entry, Beekman discusses his experience last week at the NFL Scouting Combine at Indianapolis. Beekman entered the Combine rated as the No. 81 overall draft prospect by Frank Coyle of draftinsiders.com. "He's one of the top five guards or the top five centers, if you had to break it down by position," Coyle said. "The truth is he's probably in the top three in both."

"They throw you in there and throw so much at you. They want to see how you react. They want to see your personality and how you react in such a hostile environment or such a chaotic environment. I thought the experience was good. I liked going out there, showing teams what I've got and being able to interview with them.

"The questions (in interviews) were basically what I expected. A lot of teams do their homework. They already know basically 90 percent of what they need to know about you before you walk in the room. They just want to find out the 10 percent they can't find out from film or a phone call. They do their job researching you, calling up your high school coaches, calling up teachers, calling up friends, looking you up on the computer to see if you've been in trouble. There's a lot of information out there that's accessible through a phone call or the Internet. They want to shake your hand, look you in the eye and see what kind of person you are. Coaches test your knowledge of the game and want to see how you present yourself.

"The Combine wasn't exactly what I thought, but it was a fun time. It was fun just chatting with some of the guys I made friends with at the Senior Bowl. Dan Mozes of West Virginia and Levi Brown of Penn State were a couple of the guys I got to play with on the North team, and Doug Datish (of Ohio State) and my teammate James Marten from Boston College.

"I think I did fine. I don't think I'm the greatest test taker, but I think I did fine. I just wanted to show them what I could do. It might not be spectacular, it might not be pretty, but I went out there and pushed myself as best as I possibly could. Hopefully it will pay off in the long run.

Beekman wasn't sure whether or not he helped himself with his performance at the Combine.

"I don't know. Teams aren't going to show their hand. I could have helped myself or hurt myself. You never know. You always want to take a step forward and not a step back. I think I presented myself well. I just wanted to show who I am and what kind of person I am. I think I did that. I think I did it pretty well."

Beekman admitted he couldn't help but notice how some of his colleagues were faring in their workouts.

"You've got (Texas offensive lineman Justin) Blalock doing 40 reps (on the 225-pound bench press). Manny Ramirez from Texas Tech did 40 reps. And there were guys who looked good running and vertical leaping. The offensive linemen were all nice to each other. I felt the camaraderie and everybody pushing each other. Even though this is competition, everybody was rooting for each other."

After returning from the pressure-filled atmosphere at the Combine, Beekman planned to relax and unwind for a couple of days before gearing up for Boston College's pro day on March 20.

"Right now I'm back in Jacksonville. I'm taking a couple of days off. I ran in the pool and did some stretches in the pool. I went into the Combine trying not to stress, but there's always that little stress. I'm just going to see a movie and relax (for a couple of days), then I'll get back to running and lifting.

"I'm honestly honored I even got to go to the Combine. There are a lot of players who would love to go to the Combine and just be a part of that experience. God blessed me just to go there. I knew that however I did, just being there was something special."


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