While competing in the recent U.S. Army National Combine in San Antonio, Jeremy Ward, a junior offensive tackle from Pottsville, Ark., was too focused on the task at hand to evaluate his performance during the actual event.
Only later, did he critique himself.
"I didn't realize I did good until I got four hours outside of San Antonio," Ward said. "I was riding in the car, and my dad was talking to me about it. He was saying that I did a good job. And it hit me, I did really well here."
Others apparently agreed with that assessment.
Following the event, Ward was named by Rivals.com as a first-team all-combine performer.
"I got up there, and there were some pretty big boys [at the combine]," Ward said. "I'm the biggest kid at my school, and there were kids that made me look pretty small. I told myself, 'You came all this way, why not show out?' "
For Ward, who has played organized football only three years, the Army combine provided him with the measuring stick he has craved.
"It was a great experience," Ward said. "I'm not going to lie; if I could, I would go back there every single year."
To date, Ward has yet to receive any offers. But he expects that to change sooner rather than later. The 6-foot-4, 275-pound two-year starter said he has been hearing from Alabama Arkansas, Mississippi, Nebraska, North Carolina, Texas A&M and UCLA. Arkansas and Ole Miss have shown the most interest. Each dropped by his school last week, he said.
Ward has been invited to the Razorbacks' upcoming junior day.
"Arkansas is really interested in me," Ward said. "But I don't want to get ahead of myself. I need to keep working."