March 14, 2013
Law school's calling his name loud and clear.
Now it's possibly the NFL or even the CFL who want a piece of a former multisport Greenwave star.
Trent de Braga, who graduated from Fallon in 2009, starred all four seasons for the Division II Colorado Mesa Mavericks and is getting an opportunity to let the country know that he can play ball at the highest level. Having already been accepted to seven different law schools, de Braga was invited to the inaugural ProGrass International Scout Bowl, a combination of a combine and all-star game suited for the best lesser-known players.
"It's just a big opportunity for me. I'm really grateful this opportunity came about," de Braga said. "There will be pretty much scouts from every team (in the NFL and CFL)."
De Braga's hopeful that he can make a lasting impression on the scouts because many players who have flown under the college radar have surprised the NFL, like New England quarterback Tom Brady who was drafted in the sixth round or Baltimore gunslinger Joe Flacco, who played ball at Division I-AA Delaware.
"With a lot of these guys in the NFL, the smaller school kids don't get drafted but go to the camps. A lot of them are unknown," de Braga said. "Scouts aren't going to waste their time. There are players in the NFL and Canadian league who got a chance. That's all you can ask for is a chance."
While both rosters are filled with players from various backgrounds — Divisions I-AA, II, III and NAIA — some Division I players who did not merit an invite to last month's NFL Combine are also getting a chance to showcase their talents. Scouts from not only the NFL and CFL will be on hand. IFL, AFL, and European professional scouts were also observing during the three-day event.
De Braga, who will sport the No. 5, will be playing defensive back for the South team, which consists of players from universities at Alabama, Florida, Clemson and South Florida, and even those who played outside the United States including Mexico.
The top 82 college seniors and free agents participated in a combine on Wednesday and will play in the all-star game tonight at 4 p.m. at Braly Municipal Stadium at North Alabama (Florence), home of the Division II championship. The game will be streamed on the University of North Alabama's website.
"This game is really about going out there and showing these scouts what I can do," de Braga said. "I'm going to have to stand out. You have to rise above in big-time situations. I'm just going to try to have the best game of my career and try to prove myself."
Trent's father, Lester de Braga, who along with his wife Angela de Braga will watch the game live, has always been a firm believer with his three sons that they have a shot to accomplish great things, either on the football field or in the classroom.
"I've always said that if you have the talent to move on, you always feel that you got a shot," he said. "I have no doubt in my mind he will do well and things will work out for him. He's the type of kid who plays his heart out 110 percent out there. I always thought he would get a shot and now he's getting it."