Uncertainty envelopes most any football player that harbors hopes of being selected in the NFL draft, which begins tonight at 7 at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.
Kansas State, coming off a Big 12 championship, an 11-2 season and a BCS berth in the Fiesta Bowl, has several players entertaining those dreams.
But along with it comes a measure of angst.
No Kansas State player is likely to be drafted in the first round, something only two players in team history have accomplished — Salina native and cornerback Terence Newman, now with the Cincinnati Bengals, was the No. 5 selection in the first round of the 2003 draft by the Dallas Cowboys. Quarterback Josh Freeman, out of Grandview, Mo., was selected 17th overall in the opening round in 2009 by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
But Friday’s 7 p.m. second and third rounds could find the likes of linebacker Arthur Brown and wide receiver Chris Harper — both Wichita products — getting their names called.
Brown reportedly has beefed up from 225 pounds to 237, something that is a necessity for him to play at the next level.
Harper led the Wildcats with 58 catches for a team-best 857 yards in 2012 in their run-minded offense.
Rounds four through seven will be selected on Saturday, starting at 11 a.m.
Quarterback Collin Klein appears to be a longshot to be drafted, but don’t be surprised if a team picks up the Heisman Trophy finalist in one of the final rounds or signs him to a free-agent contract. Klein brings a read-option pedigree from Kansas State, which could lure a suitor, although some NFL scouts question his mechanics — most notably his arm strength.
Fullback Braden Wilson, a native of Smith Center, also figures to land a free-agent contract if he isn’t drafted. A bruising 6-foot-3, 251-pounder, Wilson, whose parents, Chuck and Meg, live in Great Bend, is regarded as one of the top-10 fullback prospects in the nation.
Back in February, Brown, Harper, Klein, Wilson and kicker Anthony Cantele all participated in the 2013 NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis.
Cornerback Nigel Malone is a possible draft selection. He had five pass interceptions for Kansas State last fall, and later was named as the most outstanding player on defense during the East-West Shrine Game, where he returned an interception 30 yards for a touchdown.
Cantele is also likely to sign as a free agent, along with the likes of defensive end Meshak Williams and linebacker Justin Tuggle.