TomVH: Sparq Scores from The Opening

Submitted by TomVH on July 7th, 2011 at 6:40 PM

As everyone knows by now there are several Michigan commitments and targets at the Nike event, The Opening, in Oregon. You can watch some of the events tonight on ESPNU at 9pm. The first part of the week was spent with the prospects running combine drills to figure out their Sparq training score.

The Sparq score is determined by using an equation that combines the prospect's forty yard dash, shuttle, powerball* (measured in feet), and vertical leap. Here are a look at the scores for the Michigan commitments and targets, and you can also see the rest of the scores here. The finals video is here.


Name 40 Time Shuttle Powerball Vertical Total
DB Anthony Standifer 4.61 4.38 38 30.7 91.77
DB Terry Richardson 4.55 4.22 31 33.2 87.93
DE/LB Mario Ojemudia 5.02 4.44 35 30.1 79.29
OL Erik Magnuson 5.38 4.78 41 22 77.85


Name 40 Time Shuttle Powerball Vertical Total
WR Dwayne Stanford 4.73 4.35 40 34.9 101.64
OL Kyle Murphy 5.31 4.52 42 28.3 96.21
DE Adolphus Washington 4.97 4.57 42.5 24.6 91.89
OL Josh Garnett 5.38 4.68 38 28 90.81
OL Adam Bisnowaty 5.31 5.34 44.5 25.6 79.89
OL Zach Banner 5.54 5.34 44.5 19.6 79.89
TE Ron Thompson 5.27 4.51 38 25.4 75.51

Top Three Scores:

Name 40 Time Shuttle Powerball Vertical Total
DB Daje Johnson (TCU) 4.34 4.01 45 40.8 146.52*
RB Derrick Henry (2013) 4.54 4.29 42.5 39.2 134.19
RB Altee Tenpenny (2013) 4.49 3.92 41 35.1 133.77

As you can see this testing isn't necessarily set up for the bigger prospects to score high. The forty times were, I believe, laser timed also. That's at least what people were tweeting that were at the event. Take from this what you will, just interesting to see how they all stack up if nothing else.

Derrick Henry is also a 6'4", 222 lb running back. He's in the 2013 class and took second in the preliminary ratings.

Ohio RB Bri'onte Dunn only had a 40 time recorded, it was a 4.77. 

*The powerball is throwing a weighted ball from their knees as far as they can.

**I believe Daje' Johnson's score is a record



July 7th, 2011 at 6:50 PM ^

Standifer could easily be our best DB we sign in this class.  I think he was waayyyyyy under covered in the early rankings.  Could (should?) be a 4 star by the final rankings.


July 7th, 2011 at 6:57 PM ^

FWIW - of the 21 CBs there, Richardson's 40 time was 14th and Standifer's was 16th.  Morgan and Reeves were both faster (4.49 and 4.51, respectively).  In the shuttle, Richardson was 11th and Standifer was 16th.

Ojemudia, surprisingly, was one of the slowest amongst all DL running a 5.02 time in the 40.


July 7th, 2011 at 7:10 PM ^

I really think these SPARQ ratings are a pretty crappy way of judging potential football players.  I believe Reggie Bush got like a 93 and Tim Tebow a 97.  Meanwhile the previous record holder (like in the 140s or something) is some decathalete that never amounted to anything on the football field.

That being said, I'll still throw the fact that Pittman only beat Mario by less than 0.1 at every State fan out there.  Hah!


July 7th, 2011 at 7:48 PM ^

Well, that comment was kind of sarcastic because it would be stupid to compare recruits on SPARQ scores alone.  But alas, the internet has yet to devise a way to convey my tone of voice.  But honestly, Pittman's scores a little disappointing considering he is supposed to be that super athletic DE/OLB, especially for his size.  I was kind of surprised actually.


July 7th, 2011 at 7:39 PM ^

At the OSU camp, they said Stanford ran like a 4.9 or something really slow, and thus why he shouldn't get an offer.  But I think most people know speed is not his strength.  He kind of reminds me of Plaxico Burress.  Really tall and great ball skills, but kind of slow.  Didn't Plaxico run a 4.7 at his NFL combine?


July 7th, 2011 at 7:52 PM ^

It was a 4.59 (I just Googled it), but that was after a few years of training in a college S&C program.

If anyone's worried about Stanford's speed, you're looking at the wrong skill set.  It's like looking at a defensive end's vertical jump.  Yeah, it would be great if a DE could jump 42" in the air and bat down an occasional pass . . . but it's more important for him to be able to rush the passer, stop the run, etc.


July 7th, 2011 at 7:34 PM ^

I did not find any of the Michigan's 40 times or verticals that impressive.  To be satisfied by a 4.61 time is basically settling.  Other top programs will have recievers that run faster, so how are they going to be caught?  I like Standifer and Richardson committing to Michigan, but hopefully this is not their average times and just a one run record.


July 7th, 2011 at 7:46 PM ^

Mario Manningham ran a 4.59.  So we have one high school senior who is .04 seconds faster than Manningham, and one high school senior who is .02 seconds slower.  Both are faster than Donovan Warren.

I'm not sure there's a need to be disappointed.

People get used to FAKE forty times in the 4.3s and 4.4s and then they're disappointed when real forty times are slower.

Perhaps you should nudge your unrealistic expectations into the realistic range.


July 7th, 2011 at 7:54 PM ^

So, because I expect a CB to run faster then a 4.7 I am being unrealistic?  Recievers who are taller then 6" that run 4.5 or better are not realistic?  As I said, I hope this is just a one time record of their run and not what they place as an average.


July 7th, 2011 at 8:09 PM ^

Speaking of exaggerations...

...thank you for proving my point.

Now Standifer's electronically timed 40-yard dash is a 4.7?  Up at the top of this page, it was a 4.61.  Did he somehow get slower in the time it took me to read this thread?

I'm not saying it's unrealistic to want kids to run fast.  But to be disappointed or judge them negatively because of a 40 time before their senior year is just kind of silly, especially when it's not even that bad of a time.  Again, I just named you two very solid Michigan players (one a WR, one a CB) who were almost the same exact speed when they joined the NFL...and Standifer/Richardson/Stanford are all about 17 years old.


July 7th, 2011 at 8:21 PM ^

Good points Magnus. People also need to remember most NFL prospects train specifically for the 40 for months before the combine. Even then, you have future pro bowl cornerbacks, like Charles Woodson, who barely run an electronically timed 40 in under 4.6 seconds. 


July 7th, 2011 at 9:24 PM ^

I apologize, the 4.7 was in  Stanford's time and I got the two times mixed up.  Nonetheless, a 4.61 for a CB is not that impressive.  I am not saying that this is Standifer's normal time (4.61), because he could have just had an off day in acceleration and rhythm of the run.  The criticism on Hollowell was his height and 40 time (between 4.55-4.7), so why wouldn't there be criticism on Standifer's?  I am excited that he committed to Michigan, but in my opinion, to be excited on ALL aspects of the player  just because he committed to your school whether it is deserved or not is just not plausible. 


July 7th, 2011 at 9:35 PM ^

I am not saying that I want him to run faster, because it is what it is and you can't teach anyone to run faster.  What I am saying is that he may have a lot of problems playing the position against faster WRs. 


July 8th, 2011 at 9:45 AM ^

You can teach people to run faster. Speed can be about technique, form, and the quality of shape one is in. You can't teach elite speed like Denards and you can't teach a guy who runs a 5.2 forty to run a 4.4 forty (generally). At a 4.55 and 4.61, it wouldn't be a complete stretch that these guys could run a sub 4.5 (mainly Richardson) by the end of their college. By my count the list had 4 WR faster than Terry and 9 faster than Standiford, with the 5 different guys having mainly 4.59 and 4.6 forty times. Unless winning a football game is based purely on the 40 yard races, a .01 difference in a forty time isn't a big deal, especially going into college. Everyone, you particularly, gets excited with the fake forty times coaches, recruits, and families put out there to try and sell their player, themself, and their son to college programs. Obviously, you are right, I would love to have only corners who ran 4.3 forties, but preferably I would desire corners who can play corner and shut down receivers. I would also like corners with 50 vertical leaps and were all 6'4. It would be nice if they had "Frickin Laser Beams attached to their foreheads" also. I just saw a listing for Charles Woodson for a 4.44 forty time with GB. A Heisman winner, winner of best defenseman in the NFL, and a Superbowl Champ, only runs a forty at .11 and .17 sec better than our soon to be seniors in high school recuits, I consider it solid pickups for us. There aren't a lot of kids who can run fast forties. You just think it is so prevalent because the Combine values it so much, and because you don't seem to notice this is a top event with the best "prospects" [emphasis added] in the country representing a minute proportion of the overall group of potential college football players.