Weight: 222 pounds
Vertical Jump: 36.5 inches
Broad Jump: 10’4”
40 Yard Dash: 4.56 seconds
Bench Press: 13 reps
Krishawn Hogan is an athlete that could not be left out on a website called Underdog Dynasty. In the upcoming NFL draft, he is an underdog to the other underdogs. His story is incredible as he’s gone from janitor, to the best player in Marian history.
Hogan played for a small school in Indiana, Marian University, which is part of the NAIA. Most people would dismiss him outright for being the only NAIA player with the potential to be drafted, but let’s take a look at why he may be a name that you should know.
The Best Wide Receiver in NAIA
The NAIA is not exactly where NFL scouts search for talent on a regular basis. In this division one will mostly find small schools that simply do not have the stream of athletes to compete at a higher level, or they are not concerned with being a powerhouse. It offers many players the opportunity to continue playing sports that they love, even if they don’t have what it takes to play as a pro.
Hogan’s level of competition is the main criticism of his game, and as Zak Keefer poignantly explains: “nobody’s going to mistake Marian University for an NFL breeding ground.” This is an apt description for most NAIA schools and athletes, but that does not mean it is utterly impossible for a player to rise above. Hogan has done just that by being invited to the NFL combine despite the school he plays for. He looks to prove that his success are a result of his ability rather than circumstance.
Hogan’s unique situation and background will bring a lot of criticism, but something that is not controversial is the statistical line he has produced over the last two seasons. He is described in his NFL Combine profile as a “touchdown juggernaut” because he scored 56 combined throughout the last two seasons. In the 2016 season he caught 15 touchdowns, ran for 10 more, and even threw one. It is clear that the coaching staff wanted the ball in his hands, and it was beneficial to the team.
A Niche in the Passing Game
This article intends to bring about the perceived strengths and weaknesses of Krishawn Hogan’s game. His statistical line and contribution to the team is undisputed, but it comes against competition that is nowhere near NFL-caliber. In order to get noticed at this level he had to dominate which is exactly what he did. Now, what else can he do about proving he belongs in the NFL? Here are a few things Hogan must do in order to make an NFL roster.
Hogan must prove he is a consistent pass catcher. There is no wiggle room here; he needs to be nearly perfect with the fundamentals of his position. Running clean routes and going to get the ball right off the bat in practices are absolutely vital to his future in the league. This will alleviate many doubts and some of the stigma associated with his draft candidacy.
Once he becomes a consistent performer, he will need to use his size effectively. He has to win one-on-one battles against defensive backs. He needs to perform like the big, athletic receiver that he is (6’3” 222 lbs). If the ball goes in the air in his direction he has to be aggressive, he has to go up and take it.
Finally, Hogan needs to find a niche once he establishes himself. Something that is underrated by metrics but is always needed on NFL teams is a possession-type receiver. Players will run a blazing 40-meter time but they can’t catch a hitch route or consistently run clean routes, and are only 50/50 on deep routes. These players still get drafted in the first round and phase out all the time. It would behoove Hogan to try and fill the role of possession receiver for this reason.
Players like Krishawn Hogan are the reason that football is such an entertaining and inspiring sport. Taking such a non-traditional route and still being invited to the NFL combine is a feat in itself, but he has the potential to do so much more.
According to CBS he is rated as the 376th overall prospect in the upcoming draft. This does not place him in contention to be drafted, but that does not mean it can’t happen. Even if it does play out that way, expect to see him signed as an undrafted free agent.