Brandon Copeland participates in NFL Regional Combine

Saturday morning, Penn senior DE Brandon Copeland participated in the final NFL Regional Combines of the draft season in his hometown of Baltimore.

Though he didn't PR in any events after a solid Pro Day performance last Monday at Villanova, he still said it was "a good day," and he "did well in everything and was still a leader for the day." That said, he still knows he can perform better and hopes to do so at the Eagles local workout in April and potentially at the NFL Super Regional combine April 7 in Dallas. He will learn this week whether or not he receives an invitation.

As one of just four defensive ends registered for the Baltimore Combine, Copeland said he did the majority of his drills at outside linebacker. He's hoping to be a 3-4 combo DE/OLB, so doing these drills wasn't unexpected. He said he did well in the first half of defensive line drills then was bumped to linebacker.

Video from Baltimore isn't available yet, but here's video of Copeland from Villanova's pro day:

We'll continue to track the progress of Copeland and teammates Joe Bonadies (OL) and Scott Lopano (P).

Copeland, Bonadies and Lopano happy with pro day performance

After getting an early start to the morning — Villanova's Pro Day started at 7 a.m. and they had left campus by 5:45 — Penn football seniors Brandon Copeland, Joe Bonadies and Scott Lopano are happy with how they performed.

At least four NFL scouts were in attendance — the Saints, Seahawks, Chiefs and Eagles — according to a tweet sent by Copeland's agent Ed Wasielewski. All three are very happy with their performances and posted personal bests in multiple drills. Bonadies said they all had PRs in bench and broad jump. Lopano, who garnered particular interest punting for a Seattle scout, said they "turned some heads," and Copeland added that they "definitely impressed some people today." Copeland noted that he did the most drills out of any of the participants today since he worked out at defensive end and linebacker, and said he was proudest of his linebacker drills and broad jump. Full results are after the jump.

So what's next? Copeland has a chance to improve upon his performance today — he was a touch slower than he had hoped on his 40 and said he slipped on the turf in the 20-yard shuttle — but it's a bit of a waiting game for now. The ultimate would be to hear from teams that want to bring them in, because then they'll know for sure they have interest. Here's what they had to say last week: Continue reading

More from NFL Pro Day prep

I spent Tuesday and Wednesday of last week with Penn football seniors Brandon Copeland, Joe Bonadies and Scott Lopano, observing their workouts and getting a feel for what their expectations are for Monday's Pro Day at Villanova and the draft/free agency progress. There was a lot of information that didn't make it into Monday's story, so I wanted to make sure it got out.

At Tuesday's workout, Copeland was working with Penn quarterback Ryan Becker, who had just been cleared for spring workouts after tearing his ACL last summer and missing all of the 2012 season. Becker has a rocket for an arm, which is exactly what Copeland will get at Monday's pro day and Saturday's Ravens Combine during linebacker drills. Quarterback Billy Ragone, defensive back Justyn Williams and Lopano have all played QB for Copeland the past few weeks, but Becker challenges him the most. Copeland looked good, missing just two catches out of at least 40 over the course of the workout. He's been working under the guidance of strength and conditioning coach Steven Brindle and Copeland's agent, Ed Wasielewski.

He runs routes, first as a walk-through, then halfspeed and twice at full speed. Then he does it all again in the opposite direction. After one route, he says to Becker, "If I can do these, I can do anything." He does them with ease. Then he moves on to defensive line drills, perfecting the motions that he's done day in and day out for years. Becker encourages him. "Hit it!" he yells. "You can hit harder than that!" Continue reading

Three to participate in NFL Pro Day, Regional Combines

As has become typical of the Penn football team, three seniors will participate in pro days to showcase their skills to NFL scouts this spring. No Quakers were invited to this weekend's Combine, but DL Brandon Copeland, OL Joe Bonadies and P Scott Lopano are working toward playing at the next level.

For the first time in several years, Penn will not host its own pro day. Rather, the players are opting to attend Villanova's pro day on Mar. 18, hoping to gain some attention from scouts visiting Wildcats wide receiver Norman White.

In addition, Copleand and Bonadies will separately participate in NFL Regional Combines. Bonadies, a Leonia, N.J., native, will attend the N.Y. Jets' Regional Combine on Mar. 2, while Copeland will go to the Baltimore Ravens' Regional Combine on Mar. 22. Copeland is a Baltimore native himself, and his grandfather was drafted by and won a Super Bowl with the Baltimore Colts.

UPDATE: Lopano is also participating in two additional specialist combines. The first is Mar. 1-3 in Phoenix with specialist kicking coach Gary Zauner and the second is Mar. 9-14 at Florida Atlantic University with coach Mike Husted. Continue reading

Darien Nelson-Henry to play versus Harvard

I stopped by the Palestra today to check in with freshman Darien Nelson-Henry and his knee injury. During Friday's game against Yale, he injured his left knee in the first half and returned for limited action in the second. Saturday against Brown, Nelson-Henry was bandaged and ready to play, but didn't see any game action.

The verdict? Nelson-Henry called it a low-grade sprain of his left MCL. He's practicing this week and feels he'll be 100 percent for Harvard on Friday. Here's the full interview:

Do you have a diagnosis for your knee?

Yeah, it's just a sprained MCL. Low Grade 1, maybe Grade 2. Nothing serious.

And you're practicing this week?

Yeah, I am practicing this week. I'll be back for Harvard.

On Saturday, were you able to play and just taking a precaution?

It was mostly precautionary. I definitely was not going to be at 100 percent if I was to play, so the coaches just didn't want to chance it and have my injury exacerbated. So they just decided to sit me out and wait for this big weekend coming up.

So you're practicing [Monday], you're off tomorrow and you're all good?

Yeah, I'll be good to go.

Do you feel like you'll be 100 percent?

Yes, definitely. I'll definitely be 100 percent by Harvard.

A fifth year for Ragone, Colavita and Marsh?

With Super Bowl week in full swing, it's worth noting what the Penn football team is up to this offseason. Specifically, three seniors and their plans for an extra season at Franklin Field.

If seniors Billy Ragone, Brandon Colavita and Lyle Marsh have it their way, they'll be back on the field for the 2013 season as fifth-year seniors. Ragone missed his freshman campaign with a shoulder injury, Colavita was out most of last season and Marsh missed much of his sophomore and junior seasons. While Ragone and Marsh have had time to plan their academic schedules in order to gain a fifth year of eligibility from the Ivy League, Colavita has had less time to plan. But according to Penn Associate Director of Communications Eric Dolan, all three plan to apply but have not officially submitted anything to the league.

The trio will have to wait several months before they find out if they can play another season. Official paperwork does not go to the Ivy League until later this semester, and the athletes won't hear from the league office until May — at the earliest. Penn wide receiver Joe Holder, Class of 2012, didn't hear from the Ivy League regarding his fifth-year status until August, just weeks before the season started officially. And Cornell lacrosse player Rob Pannell, who broke his foot in the second game of his season last spring, was approved by the Ivy League in early August.

Game 10 Liveblog — M. Hoops at Delaware

After a long layoff for finals, the Quakers (2-7) take on Delaware (3-8) at the Bob Carpenter Center in Newark, Del. I'm here with now former sports editor Mike Wisniewski and hoops beat writer John Phillips. Follow along and join the conversation as Penn looks for its first win since Nov. 28.

Game Nine Liveblog — Penn hoops vs. Villanova

The Quakers kick off the Big 5 schedule tonight at the Palestra with Villanova. The Wildcats are 0-2 in the Big 5 and also have a loss to Columbia this season. Tonight's game is on NBC Sports Network, but follow along our liveblog and join the conversation!

Live Blog Game 7 — Penn hoops vs. Binghamton

I'm here with David Greenbaum at the Palestra where Penn takes on Binghamton. Let's see if the Quakers can end their five game losing streak.

Game Six Liveblog — Penn at Lehigh (NIT Tip-Off Tournament)

I'm here again with hoops beat writer Allison Bart at Stabler Arena in Bethlehem, Pa., where Penn takes on Lehigh in the consolation bracket of the NIT Tip-Off Tournament. The Quakers fell last night to Fordham, so let's see if they can find a much-needed victory tonight.