The pro day held at Princeton on March 20 featured the player who turn wind up being the first Ivy Leaguer selected in the 2013 NFL Draft.
Defensive end Mike Catapano was one of three Tigers players who worked out outdoors on FieldTurf in front of representatives from 15 NFL teams, including Jay Hayes, the defensive line coach of the Cincinnati Bengals.
Catapano had private workouts on March 26 with the Philadelphia Eagles — who worked him out as an outside linebacker — and the Minnesota Vikings — who worked him out as a defensive lineman.
Coming out of high school, Catapano — who then weighed 215 pounds — was offered scholarships to every Ivy League school, plus Temple. Ultimately, Catapano went to Princeton and capped his college career with as a Bushnell Cup recepient — for the Ivy League’s top defensive player — and an invitation to play in the East-West Shrine Game.
At his pro day, Catapano (6-foot-3 7/8, 271 pounds) ran the 40-yard dash in 4.75 seconds on each attempt. He had a 37 1/2-inch vertical jump and a 9-foot-8 broad jump. He ran the short shuttle in 4.31 seconds and the three-cone drill in 7.09 seconds. Catapano threw the bar up 33 times on the bench press (225 pounds).
Catapano should be drafted relatively high, somewhere around the fourth or fifth rounds. His stiffest competition for being the first Ivy Leaguer selected in late April could come from Harvard fullback Kyle Juszczyk or Cornell receiver Luke Tasker (son of Buffalo Bills legend Steve Tasker).
The last time a player from Princeton was selected in the draft was in 2001, when the Seattle Seahawks took offensive tackle Dennis Norman in the seventh round. Princeton’s most notable alum in the NFL is Dallas Cowboys coach Jason Garrett, who also was a quarterback for the team from 1993 to 1999.