Defensive back-quarterback who also played basketball, wrestled and ran track as a California prep. After redshirting in 2009, he was primarily used as a special teams player in 2010 and had 14 tackles in 12 games. In 2011, reported to fall camp listed as third on the depth chart but moved into the starting lineup because of injuries and never looked back. Started all 12 games at right cornerback and registered 68 tackles, eight pass breakups and one interception with one tackle for loss. Started 13 games in 2012 and recorded 75 tackles, 13 pass breakups and three INTs with 1.5 tackles for loss and one forced fumble. Was limited in the 2013 spring after undergoing off-season knee surgery (cyst removal) before participating for OSU in track (60 meters). During the fall, he tied for the conference lead in interceptions, starting 13 games and tallying 61 tackles, four pass breakups and six INTs with 3.5 tackles for loss, one sack and two forced fumbles. Set a school single-game mark with two fumbles returned for touchdowns in the Hawaii Bowl against Boise State, earning game MVP honors. Had six punt returns for 31 yards (5.2-yard average). Team captain.
Instinctive with good eyes, anticipation and awareness. Very athletic. Tied for the quickest short shuttle among cornerbacks at the combine (4.00 seconds) and was one of the top performers in the bench press (20 reps) and three-cone drill (6.72 seconds). Transitions easily with loose hips and clean footwork. Quick, agile and light on his feet. Aggressive in run support. Solid tackler. Plays with discipline. Good leaping ability. Has a special-teams temperament and excels as a gunner. Extremely intelligent and football smart. Outstanding intangibles, including leadership traits. Durable and experienced.
Thinly built and lacks ideal strength. Can be knocked back in a pile and could stand to strike with more pop and explosion. Recovery speed is only average.
Athletic, sticky coverman whose position-specific traits and consistent performance inspire confidence he has what it takes to contribute readily in the pros. Has starter-caliber physical ability, a natural feel for the game and sterling intangibles. Underrated, low-risk prospect.