INDIANAPOLIS -- When Cordarrelle Patterson committed to Tennessee out of junior college last year, he joined wide receivers Da'Rick Rogers and Justin Hunter to give Vols quarterback Tyler Bray some of the best offensive weapons in the country.
Rogers, however, failed multiple drug tests and left the program, and while Hunter and Patterson impressed enough to get on the NFL radar, Tennessee struggled as a team. All three of the wide receivers have since declared for the NFL Draft and are left wondering what could have been.
"It was labeled as receiver U," Hunter said. "We had a good coach Charlie Baggett came there and recruited us tough. It's crazy. I wish we all could have been at the school at the same time. We could have had a lot of success there on offense if we had three guys like that."
It's a wonder that the three even ended up at Tennessee. Baggett convinced Rogers to de-commit from Georgia and got Hunter to switch his commitment from LSU to Tennessee. Rogers realizes things didn't work out as planned and shouldered the blame.
"I can only speak on my own behalf," Rogers said. "It was just me being immature, not being responsible and not doing the right things to be a professional."
Patterson says the situation in Tennessee contributed to his decision to leave school early and enter the NFL Draft. Coach Derek Dooley was fired at the end of the season, and Patterson felt it was time to move on as well.
"I didn't expect to be a one year and done," Patterson said. "We had all the coaching changes and everything was getting a little crazy out there. I just wanted to get out of there."
Things may not have worked out exactly how they hoped in Tennessee, but all three wideouts were in Indianapolis for the 2013 NFL Scouting Combine with something to prove. They were excited to go through the process with one another have a chance to compete.
"It's exciting," Hunter said. "I love to see them here with me. We can all go out there and compete on Saturday. I'm real excited to see what they can do."
Hunter is particularly excited to see what Patterson and Rogers can do because of the bets he's made with the two of them.
"We definitely have made a bet already about who's going to run the fastest time," Hunter said of Patterson. "I definitely made a bet with Da'Rick about who's going to jump the highest, so I've got a lot on my plate to prove. I just know I'm going to beat both of them."
As for what's on the line in this competition, Hunter said that is to be determined.
"We haven't talked about that yet," Hunter said with a laugh. "After we get to the NFL maybe we can think about something.
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