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Urban Meyer supports underclass combine, “right” information for draft prospects

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - DECEMBER 06: Head coach Urban Meyer watches his team from the sidelines during the first quarter of the Big Ten Championship against the Wisconsin Badgers at Lucas Oil Stadium on December 6, 2014 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

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Ohio State Coach Urban Meyer said Wednesday that he’s working with coaching colleagues and the American Football Coaches Association on a plan that would eventually allow potential early entries to future NFL drafts to work out for scouts and executives without losing their college eligibility.

Nine Ohio State players gave up their remaining eligibility to enter the 2016 draft. Seven of them were drafted, four in the four first round, so most of those players were making the right decision. But when Meyer was asked at his hometown youth football camp if the current system allowed both the players and NFL teams the chance to get the proper information on such decisions, he answered “no” and said he’s talked with AFCA executive director Todd Berry and Alabama coach Nick Saban “many times” about implementing a plan that would allow potential early entries to perform for and talk with NFL decision makers.

“It’s not a process that’s well done right now,” Meyer said. “There’s a rule that says the NFL can’t look at juniors. Well of course the NFL [scouts] are going to look at a junior. And they should look at a junior.

“We’re going to try to get something where there’s a time those [scouts] can actually come in and they can work out the juniors. Because information is good. [The players] are getting their information somewhere, so why not get it from the experts -- the scouts, the general managers, people who have the right information? They’re getting it from agents and they’re getting it from wannabes, and that’s not good information.”

Saban said in May that he’d like to see the NFL and NCAA work together to make the system better and proposed a combine-like event for underclassmen, and Meyer said Wednesday he’s “absolutely” for an underclassman combine.

Meyer held an informational session at Ohio State last March which every NFL team attended during which he and his assistants talked about Ohio State’s underclassmen prospects with NFL scouts.