When I spoke with Dave Campo three weeks ago in Austin, he was extremely excited about safety Alan Ball. “He’s my man, he’s my man,” said Campo on a couple of occasions.
When I asked him about Mike Hamlin, he said that after last season, Hamlin has a lot to make up. Even Brad Sham got into the conversation as I asked questions. He, too, wanted to know about Hamlin’s ability to get onto the field THIS year and contribute. Campo, the defensive backs coach, said again that Alan Ball’s his guy and Hamlin is right behind him.
The kid that I inquired about is rookie free-agent Barry Church, http://sports.espn.go.com/ncf/player/profile?playerId=184579 , of Toledo. Campo said that Church is in camp and working hard to impress. A lot was said over cocktails, so I’m not sure about which player we were discussing, however I fairy certain that Campo said that if the 6-2, 221-pound Church was a tad faster that he would have been drafted in the 3rd or 4th round.
When I evaluate a smaller college player, I always want to see how he did against the “big” schools. In consecutive weeks last season, Church had 8 tackles (2 solo), 1 interception, and 1 pass deflection in a win over Colorado, and then followed it up with a 12 tackle-effort (6 solo) against Ohio State. I’m hoping this guy makes the team.
Youtube has these vids on Barry Church:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-smyVhBQ834 (at the OTAs in Dallas)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mlflk_qH1Kk (84-yd INT)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lgxa5UZ_HpU (pre-draft interview)