Springfield’s Bubba Jenkins chasing NFL dream

It’s been a long and winding road for Cole “Bubba” Jenkins, but he hopes that the next stop is the NFL.

“I just want to show how fast I am, how quick I can move, how strong I am, every aspect of the game I’m an NFL player,” Jenkins said at a morning workout prior to his pro day last week.

On Monday, fighting the rain and cold weather, Jenkins showed what he had to offer for NFL scouts at his pro day at Southeast Missouri State.

“I just felt like I needed to really prove I’m an NFL caliber athlete when it comes to speed and catching the ball,” said Jenkins.  “I believe I did that today.”

Jenkins ran a 4.5 40 meter, caught every ball, posted a 36 inch vertical and recorded 28 bench reps at 225 pounds.

This past season, Jenkins earned NAIA All-America honors, leading the nation with over 2,100 rushing yards at perennial power Morningside (IA).

Jenkins landed at Morningside for his senior season after being dismissed from NCAA-II Southwest Baptist University following a record-setting junior season.

Following a standout career at Parkview in 2012, Jenkins originally walked-on at the University of Arkansas, but stayed in Fayetteville for just one year.

It’s these moves that have taught Jenkins a lot but raise red flags for NFL scouts.

“It was a trial in my life, something bad happened that I had to make good.  When people ask me about my troubles it’s just God’s plan.”

Jenkins checks in at 5-foot-10, 215 pounds.  He offers the size, speed and proven ability NFL teams are seeking, but the crop of running backs is always strong, and Jenkins hopes he can prove he belongs; a dream he’s had for as long as he can remember.

“Since I was a little boy when my dad put that ball in my crib.  It’s always meant something to me.  When I saw my first football game it had special meaning to me, like when you see the love of your life or something. It’s just something I always knew I was going to do.”

“The scouts know my name in the NFL.  My little trouble hurt me going from school to school, so on pro day if I show outstanding numbers I believe I’m in there.”

Now with pro day behind him, Jenkins, who training at Ignition in Nashville, can only wait and see what happens.

“It was a fun experience.  I’m very blessed to have been given the chance.  Now I can just focus on the next football season with whatever team I get picked up by.”

“Very excited for draft day!”

The 2018 NFL Draft is April 27-28 in Dallas, Texas.

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