HBCUs provided four of the 256 picks through seven rounds of the 2015 National Football League (NFL) Draft.
Delaware State’s Rodney Gunter, Texas Southern’s Tray Walker and Tennessee State teammates Robert Myers and Anthony Morris all heard their name called during the two-day event.
Gunther, a defensive lineman and the 17 pick in the 4th round (116 overall), was taken by the Arizona Cardinals. He is Del State's first NFL draft pick since wide receiver Darnerien McCants was taken by the Washington Redskins in 2001. He's also the Hornets' highest draft pick since receiver John Taylor was selected by the San Francisco 49ers in the third round in 1986.
Gunter was a four-year starter from 2011 to 2014, competing in each of the Hornets' 45 games during the span. He was an All-MEAC First Team selection in 2013; and second team pick in 2012 and 2014.
His career stats include 99 solo tackles and 89 assists, 37 tackles-for-loss and 18 sacks. He was the Hornets' sack leader in each of the last three seasons.
Walker, a defensive back, was one of two HBCU products selected by the Baltimore Ravens. He was the 37th pick in the fourth round (136 overall).
Walker is tall at 6-foot-2 with outstanding length as reported by BaltimoreRavens.com. He said he was told he had the longest wingspan of any cornerback in the draft. He weighs just 191 pounds though, and said he would like to add five more pounds.
That long wingspan helps Walker re-route wide receivers in press coverage and lock up receivers off the line of scrimmage. He attacks throws at the high point and has the hands to finish with interceptions.
Walker played in 11 games last season and registered three interceptions. He had nine interceptions in 42 college games.
After taking Walker in the fourth round, the Ravens returned to the HBCU ranks and selected Tennessee State’s Myers as the 40th pick in the fifth round (176 overall).
The selection of Myers caped off a whirlwind offseason that featured stops in the 2015 Reese’s Senior Bowl and the NFL Scouting Combine.
Myers was the only offensive player to start all 12 Tiger contests as a senior and he earned a spot on the All-Ohio Valley Conference Second Team for the second straight year.
Morris, the last HBCU player drafted, is an offensive lineman selected by the Oakland Raiders as the first pick of the 7th and final round.
He quickly became one of the draft’s most intriguing prospects with his 6-foot-7, 320 lb. frame. Despite his size, he still ran a solid 40-yard dash time at TSU’s Pro Day, erasing all doubts about the tackle’s athleticism.
The Memphis native played in 11 games for his senior season, making 10 starts.