Gridiron Classic players eager to show talents to NFL scouts

Friday, January 14th 2005, 6:41 pm
By: News On 6

LADY LAKE, Fla. (AP) _ Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer says that Saturday's Gridiron Classic is like a final exam for 97 NFL prospects -- after a week of being questioned by pro football scouts. Beamer is coaching the South Squad.

Beamer's coaching opponent, Ohio State's Jim Tressel says the game is more like the end of a weeklong job interview.

The scouts have been giving the players a series of seemingly silly questions. Marshall defensive end, Johnathan Goodard, says he was asked -- ``if you were an animal, what would you be: a dog or a cat?''

Louisville running back, Lionel Gates, says he understands the purpose behind the questions. He says everybody can go out and play football, but it's what you're going to do off the field that catches the eyes of the scouts.

For the second straight year, the Gridiron Classic will be played at The Villages, a massive retirement community 60 miles from Orlando. A temporary stadium has been erected on a converted polo field.