2015 NFL DRAFT
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Eric Bassey

Height: 6-0 | Weight: 195 | College: Oklahoma
 
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Overview

What started out as a bright career for Bassey as a freshman at Oklahoma soon gave way to blown assignments and injuries that plagued him the next three seasons. Bassey has become known more for his successful writing hobby. Over the past couple of years, he has written song lyrics, movie scripts and poetry.

Bassey played defensive back, wide receiver and kick returner at North Garland High School. He was a Top 50 selection by Texas Football, was ranked as the 29th-best cornerback in the nation by Rivals100.com and the fifth-best defensive back in the Midlands by Prep Stars. Bassey was twice named to the all-district squad.

As a senior, Bassey recorded 37 tackles and 24 receptions for 276 yards. He had an 82-yard kickoff return for a touchdown and a 51-yard punt return for another score. He also excelled in track, running on a 4x100-meter relay team that finished second at the state meet.

Bassey redshirted as a freshman in 2001 at Oklahoma. He started every game at strong safety in 2002, producing a career-high 60 tackles (44 solos) with two sacks and eight stops behind the line of scrimmage in 14 games. He intercepted two passes, deflected 13 others, recovered a fumble and had two forced fumbles.

Bassey shifted to cornerback in 2003, playing behind Derrick Strait. He finished with 12 tackles (7 solos), an interception and a forced fumble. Bassey started the first nine games of the 2004 season at strongside cornerback before he was replaced in the lineup. He made 25 tackles (19 solos) and deflected two passes in 10 games.

As a senior, a lingering quadriceps/thigh injury would limit Bassey's performances. He appeared in 11 games, starting three games at "wide" cornerback and one at the boundary position. Bassey would manage only 15 tackles (9 solos) and a pass deflection for the season.

In 49 games with the Sooners, Bassey started 27 times, recording 112 tackles (79 solos) with two sacks for minus-20 yards and eight stops for losses of 29 yards. Bassey returned a fumble recovery 45 yards and three interceptions for 31 yards. He also deflected 16 passes and caused three fumbles.

Analysis

Positives: Athletically, he has a good package ? quick feet, good muscle development, long arms, broad shoulders, thick chest and above average lateral agility … Has the speed to stay right on the hip of a receiver through the route … Has loose hips and very good change of direction agility, demonstrating the range to pursue plays along the sidelines … Shows the leaping ability to extend and compete for the ball at its high point … Has the plant-and-drive ability to come out of his breaks cleanly.

Negatives: Needs to show better work ethic … Has tremendous confidence in his athletic ability, but sorely lacks in production … Shows good avoidance skills to slip past blocks when working through trash, but seems reluctant to come up and stick his head in the pile … Poor tackler who will give an arm or attack the legs, but rarely gets into position to wrap and secure … Must develop better hand usage to grab and drag down ball carriers in run support … Disappears for long stretches during the game and his reliance on freelancing has resulted in a large amount of blown coverages.

Bassey is a well-built athlete with good chest thickness, broad shoulders, knotted calves, thick thighs and a good bubble. He shows good quickness in his backpedal and crisp plant-and-drive agility. He has the hip snap and lateral agility to get to top speed quickly. He demonstrates the range to make plays in pursuit.

Bassey holds himself in high esteem and that is where his problem lies. He is a marginal worker in the training room who needs to be monitored and pushed or he will take shortcuts to get the task done. He started his career with a team-first attitude, but he will gamble and freelance too much on the field, resulting in costly blown assignments.

Bassey stays low in his pads and shows good hand placement in attempts to stay on a receiver's hip, but sometimes stalls in transition, struggling to close. He has the ability to locate receivers when working in the zone, but because of his penchant to freelance, he might be better suited for safety at the next level, as he is best when allowed to scan the field and get a jump on the ball.

He shows inconsistency reacting to receivers' cuts, especially when he sidepedals. Bassey does have the straight-line speed and acceleration to close on the ball, but needs to play his man tighter rather than giving up a big cushion. He demonstrates effective timing and athletic ability to extend and compete for the ball at its high point. Bassey also shows decent hand/eye coordination, but lacks production as a pass deflector or on interceptions.

Bassey looked like a solid tackler earlier in his career, but has now reverted to arm tackling and this has resulted in more than a few opponents slipping off his initial hits. Despite his good strength, he does not like to take on and play off ball carriers much. He is inconsistent sticking his head in the pile and needs to work his hands better in attempts to grab and drag down the runner.

Bassey's struggles as a tackler become more evident when he is working in space. He does not take good angles to the ball and at times, will duck his head upon initial contact. He prefers to attack with his arms and shoulders rather than generate proper wrap technique. I would not say he lacks courage, but Pop Warner players make better tackles in the open field.

Based on his athletic ability, size and quickness, Bassey will probably interest a team at the end of the draft. But his production has greatly dropped off since his freshman year and with only adequate work habits, you have to wonder if a pro team will have enough patience to see if he can develop.

Career Notes

Began his career as a cornerback, moving to strong safety as a redshirt freshman before shifting back to cornerback the following year … Played in 49 games, registering 60 of his 112 career tackles during his first year with the varsity.

2005 Season

Appeared in 10 games, starting at "wide" cornerback vs. Kansas State, Texas and Oklahoma State … Only managed 12 tackles (7 solos) with a pass breakup … Three of his stops came on third-down plays.

2005 SEASON

TCU, Kansas, Nebraska and Texas A&M … Did not record any tackles in these games.

Tulsa … Made one tackle on special teams.

UCLA … Followed with a pair of tackles.

Kansas State … Earned his first start for 2005, responding with three solo tackles, including one that stopped Allen Webb after the QB picked up 14 yards rushing on a third-and-13 play at the start of the second quarter … Killed a third quarter drive when he took down Jermaine Moreira after the receiver gained 10 yards on a third-and-13 pass from Webb … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Yamon Figurs-Three catches for 31 yards.

Texas … Earned another start, producing three assisted tackles, but was penalized for pass interference in the second quarter, negating middle linebacker Zach Latimer's 18-yard interception return of a Vince Young pass. The penalty nullified the play and set up a 37-yard field goal by Longhorns kicker David Pino … Was burned by receiver Ramonce Taylor for a 15-yard touchdown catch midway through the first quarter … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Ramonce Taylor-Two catches for 37 yards and a touchdown.

Baylor … Did not play after straining his quadriceps/thigh vs. Kansas.

Texas Tech … Made a pair of tackles and deflected a fourth quarter pass thrown by QB Cody Hodges that was intended for receiver Robert Johnson.

Oklahoma State … Returned to the starting lineup, but could only make one assisted tackle … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Ricky Price-Two catches for 28 yards.

Oregon (Holiday Bowl) … Closed his career with three tackles.

2004 Season

Started the first nine games at left cornerback before being replaced in the lineup … Made 25 tackles (19 solos) with two pass deflections, with 10 of his stops coming on third-down plays, but also allowed five touchdown catches before losing his starting job.

2004 Game Analysis

Bowling Green … His only tackle came on a third-and-7 pass from QB Omar Jacobs to P.J. Pope for a 16-yard gain, but was penalized for pass interference on the play, setting up a 47-yard field goal by the Falcons' Shaun Suisham in the second quarter … Was beaten by Charles Sharon on an 18-yard touchdown pass from Jacobs in the first quarter … They teamed again to add a 16-yard scoring catch vs. Bassey in the fourth quarter … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Charles Sharon-Four catches for 54 yards and two touchdowns.

Houston … Had one tackle, stopping Leonard Gibson after an 11-yard gain on a third-and-12 pass thrown by QB Kevin Kolb on Houston's first series … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Leonard Gibson-Three catches for 50 yards.

Oregon … Made five tackles (4 solos), including two third-down stops, and batted away a pass … Forced Oregon to punt on its opening drive when he deflected a third-and-6 pass thrown by QB Kellen Clemens to Demetrius Williams … Was penalized 15 yards for pass interference on a 9-yard pass to Williams from Clemens in the second quarter … Stopped another drive with 1:09 left in the first half by taking down Williams after the receiver gained 3 yards on a third-and-4 pass from Clemens … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Demetrius Williams-Six catches for 36 yards.

Texas Tech … Had five tackles, with two coming on third-down plays and one other on fourth down … In the fourth quarter, Bassey teamed with defensive tackle Lynn McGruder to stop tailback Johnnie Mack on a 1-yard catch of a third-and-10 pass from QB Sonny Cumbie. On the next play (fourth-and-9), Jarrett Hicks gained 17 yards on a out pass from Cumbie before Bassey tackled the receiver … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Jarrett Hicks-Six catches for 74 yards.

Texas … Did not record any tackles … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Tony Jeffery-One catch for 4 yards.

Kansas State … Followed with three tackles (2 solos) … A roughing the passer penalty cost Bassey 15 yards late in the first quarter … Penalized for defensive holding on a second quarter incomplete pass from QB Dylan Meier to Jermaine Moore, setting up Meier's 38-yard scoring pass to Yamon Figurs, who beat Bassey to the ball … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Yamon Figurs-Six catches for 80 yards and a touchdown.

Kansas … Posted five tackles (3 solos), including two on third-down plays, and added another stop on special teams … Late in the first quarter, Bassey brought down Marcus Henry on a 6-yard third-and-10 pass from QB Adam Barmann … Misread a deep pass from Barmann to Brandon Rideau that the receiver caught for a 78-yard touchdown in the second quarter … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Brandon Rideau-Six catches for 96 yards and a touchdown.

Oklahoma State … Deflected a pass and delivered three solo tackles … Stopped QB Donovan Woods on a 2-yard run and on the next play, batted down Woods' third-and-6 pass, forcing OSU to punt in the third quarter … Struggled the rest of the game, giving up three long receptions that set up OSU touchdowns … Was beaten by D'Juan Woods, who caught a 46-yard pass from his brother, Donovan Woods, to set up a 39-yard scoring strike to Prentis Elliott with 8:45 left in the third quarter … On OSU's next drive, the Woods brothers hooked up on a 32-yard pass to set up tailback Vernand Morency's 2-yard scoring run, capping an 87-yard, 10-play drive … In the fourth quarter, the Woodses teamed up on a 50-yard pass play to set the stage for Morency's 4-yard scoring run with 10:34 left to play … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR D'Juan Woods-Three catches for 128 yards.

Texas A&M … Made a pair of tackles, but was beaten by Terrence Murphy on an 18-yard touchdown pass from QB Reggie McNeal in the first quarter … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Terrence Murphy-Three catches for 31 yards and a touchdown.

Baylor … Did not record any tackles in a reserve role.

Nebraska, Colorado and Southern California (Orange Bowl) … Did not play (coach's decision).

2003 Season

Shifted to cornerback, playing behind Derrick Strait the entire season … Finished with 12 tackles (7 solos), a forced fumble and a 34-yard interception return in 14 games.

2003 Game Analysis

Baylor and North Texas … Posted a pair of tackles in each game.

UCLA … Added five solo tackles with a forced fumble and an interception … Stripped tailback Manuel White of the ball on a 6-yard run in the third quarter and All-America defensive tackle Tommie Harris recovered it at the UCLA 44, returning the ball 14 yards to set up Sooners QB Jason White's 22-yard touchdown pass to Lance Donley at the start of the third quarter … Returned an intercepted Drew Olson pass 34 yards for a touchdown with 1:09 left in the third quarter.

Texas Tech … Fielded a 40-yard punt from Alex Reyes in the third quarter, but fumbled the ball and Tech recovered it at the Oklahoma 39-yard line.

2002 Season

Started all year at strong safety … Recorded a career-high 60 tackles (44 solos) with two sacks for minus-20 yards and eight stops for losses of 29 yards … His eight tackles behind the line of scrimmage is the sixth-highest season total by an Oklahoma defensive back … Caused two fumbles and recovered another … Deflected 13 passes and had a pair of interceptions.

2002 Game Analysis

Tulsa … Made his collegiate debut with two tackles and caused a fumble when he stripped the ball from QB Tyler Gooch.

Alabama … Registered six tackles (5 solos) with two stops for losses of 4 yards … In the fourth quarter, Bassey recovered a fumble by QB Tyler Watts on a 9-yard run, returning the ball 45 yards for a touchdown.

Texas-El Paso … Added five hits (4 solos) with a stop for a 2-yard loss and a deflected pass.

South Florida … Posted a season-high eight tackles (7 solos) with a stop behind the line of scrimmage and a pass breakup.

Missouri … Intercepted a Brad Smith pass for a 3-yard loss and delivered five tackles with a pass deflection.

Colorado … Made four tackles … Caused a fumble on a 1-yard run by QB Robert Hodge, but the ball was recovered by Colorado's Ryan Gray at the CU 35 in the first quarter.

Texas A&M … Collected six tackles (4 solos) with a 6-yard sack and two stops behind the line of scrimmage … Intercepted a Reggie McNeal third-and-9 pass in the third quarter to set up an Oklahoma 46-yard field goal in the third quarter … Sacked McNeal for a 6-yard loss with 8:09 left to play.

Baylor and Texas Tech … Was in on four tackles (3 solos) in each game, adding a pass deflection vs. Tech.

Colorado (Big 12 Conference Championship Game) … Had four tackles (3 solos) and two pass deflections … Sacked QB Robert Hodge for a 14-yard loss on a third-and-7 play in the third quarter, forcing the Buffaloes to punt.

2001 Season

Redshirted as a freshman, performing on the scout team as a cornerback.

Injury Report

2005: Bothered most of the year by a lingering quadriceps/thigh injury.

Agility Tests

Campus: 4.35 in the 40-yard dash … Bench pressed 225 pounds 17 times … 37.5-inch vertical jump … 9'8" broad jump … 7.07 three-cone drill … 3.96 20-yard shuttle.

High School

Attended North Garland (Tex.) High School, playing football for head coach Joe Allen … Played defensive back, wide receiver and kick returner … Top 50 selection by Texas Football, ranked as the 29th-best cornerback in the nation by Rivals100.com and the fifth-best defensive back in the Midlands by Prep Stars … Twice named to the all-district squad … As a senior, Bassey recorded 37 tackles and 24 receptions for 276 yards … Also had an 82-yard kickoff return for a touchdown and a 51-yard punt return for another score … Excelled in track, running on a 4x100-meter relay team that finished second at the state meet.

Personal

Communications major … Cousin, J.J. Johnson, anchored the U.S. to the 4x100-meter relay world championship in 2003 … Son of Joy and Ben Bassey … Enjoys writing poems and movie scripts … Born 1/23/83 … Resides in Garland, Texas.

 
 

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