INDIANAPOLIS – There are no regrets for Tori Gurley.
Gurley gave up two years of collegiate eligibility when he decided to leave South Carolina’s football team in January. He was confident in his decision then and was even more sure of it Friday as he discussed his past and future with the media at the NFL Combine.
“I felt the time was now,” Gurley said. “I went a season without dropping a pass in the toughest football conference, and it was one of those things where mentally and physically I was ready for the NFL.”
Gamecocks head coach Steve Spurrier advised Gurley against leaving, as did longtime NFL personnel expert Gil Brandt, but the decision was an easy one for Gurley, he said Friday.
“It was a goal I kind of had in mind,” he said. “I knew if I went in and did what I was supposed to do, the opportunity of the NFL was going to be there. With me going a season without dropping a pass and learning everything I did from Coach Spurrier and (Steve) Spurrier Jr., it was kind of a no-brainer on my behalf.”
After leaving Columbia in January, Gurley worked on at Bommarito Performance Systems in Miami, Fla. He dropped his weight from 233 pounds to 215, he said. He measured 6-foot-4 here Friday.
“My 40 time has dropped a few tenths, and I just want to display it on Sunday,” he said. “I wanted to come in as lean as possible and show the scouts that I’m not just an H-back, I’m a wide receiver. I am going to turn a few heads here on Sunday.”
Gurley’s age played a factor in his decision, he said. Although only a sophomore last year, he is five years removed from high school. Gurley took one year off from football, spent a year at a prep school and then redshirted in 2008 at South Carolina.
“In November, I’ll be 24,” he said. “I was like, ‘Hey, I’m a man now. I’m starting to get some man strength ... and get gray hair.’ That’s what all my teammates would mess with me about, but I just felt like my time was now.”
Gurley has no predictions about where he will be drafted if he is picked in the April draft.
“Right now I am just working hard. We’ll let the chips fall. I have talked to the Ravens, Vikings. I have talked to quite a few teams. Everyone was asking me why I came out, but, with them breaking down the film, they see that I am a football player. They just want to see it all on Sundays.”