Not many people have ever heard of Slippery Rock University. That said, SRU has had a few players from their football program make it to the professional ranks, including the NFL, CFL and Arena League. Most recently, quarterback Roland Rivers III joined that list of players.
Rivers won nearly every award and accolade possible at the D-II ranks, including First-Team All-American and the Harlon Hill Trophy, which is D-II’s award for the best player in the country, much like the Heisman Trophy.
He set numerous school single-season records, such as most passing yards in a season, most completions and most touchdowns. Not to mention career records as well.
His final season was in 2019 and just like many whose college careers ended at that time, Rivers had to endure canceled pro days and camps, limiting his ability to showcase his talent in front of pro scouts.
That’s where CAMP presented by HUB Football came in. The March CAMP finally gave Rivers an opportunity to get out there in front of NFL scouts and coaches, where he had a chance to show pro decision-makers what he was capable of.
Prior to his participation at CAMP, Rivers appeared on ‘The State of Football’ show on Sports Illustrated and had this to say about the opportunity:
“This past year has given me time to improve on some things I knew I needed to improve on and I’m excited to be evaluated.”
At CAMP, one of the things that jumped out right away was his size. At 6-foot-3 and 230 pounds, Rivers stands tall and poised in the pocket. A dual-threat prospect with a big arm, he doesn’t run just to run. Rivers keeps his eyes down the field when the pocket collapses, moving to extend plays, but he showed that he can take off if the opportunity presents itself.
“I’m looking forward to learning from those guys [Geep Chryst and Seneca Wallace], soaking up as much information as I can being in a professional setting,” said Rivers during his State of Football appearance. “The CAMPs are run like an NFL OTA, so I’m just excited to be in that environment with coaches and players, and I’m eager for an opportunity.”
Rivers took that opportunity and ran with it. With the NFL only allowing five spots for rookie tryouts per club this year, there’s not a lot of chances for players like Rivers, but thanks to CAMP presented by HUB Football, Rivers was able to make the most of what was offered. Hopefully we’ll see him suit up in the black and gold for 2021.
Josh Love Quarterback, San Jose State
Another prospect garnering interest is former San Jose State quarterback Josh Love. Love has participated in several CAMPs, taking advantage of everything the unique workout program has to offer. Many have done so and it seems like it’s worked out for the former MWC Offensive Player of the Year, as he will be joining the Cleveland Browns for OTAs.
Love is another prospect who was left on the outside looking in when it came to being able to participate in much-needed pro days and training camps that were affected by the pandemic a year ago.
CAMP has given many of these players the opportunity to work out in front of professional football scouts for many different leagues, while also providing free agents a chance to take direction from former NFL players and coaches.
Love was picked up by the Rams last summer but was unable to stay with the team throughout the season. Since teams did not have the opportunity to get film - other than from his days at San Jose State - players like Love had to continue to work out on their own.
“[HUB Football] is one of the only opportunities out there in the country to get looked at.”
Also appearing on ‘The State of Football,’ Love spoke on the fact that many players are pushing for no OTAs or a restructured version, which is being peddled by the NFLPA. With just five spots allocated for tryouts, he spoke about the frustration that many of the rookies and young players feel, stating “It’s good for the vets, but for the young guys, there’s no development.”
That’s why CAMP presented by HUB Football is so valuable. It gives top-level free agent players an opportunity to perform in front of NFL teams and pro scouts, while also providing a chance to hone their skills
The next CAMP presented by HUB Football is scheduled for May 23rd at Helix Charter High School in La Mesa, California, just outside San Diego. Who will be the next future start to take this opportunity and turn it into an NFL camp invite? Stay tuned to find out.
*Tune in later this week for the initial first wave of confirmed player invitations for the next CAMP on 5/23!