CARBONDALE -- Ray Agnew had no problem working out in front of a few NFL scouts on Tuesday outside at Saluki Stadium.

Power doesn't disappear in the elements. The 5-foot-11, 242-pound senior fullback helped SIU average four yards a carry last season, and hopes to clear the way for NFL running backs this year after working out at the Salukis' Pro Day.

"Blocking is all about -- it starts from your legs and your waist and goes through your body, and that's what I've realized through the years, and I make sure my hips are strong and I can lay those important blocks," Agnew said.

Agnew, the son of 11-year NFL defensive lineman Ray Agnew Sr., who won a Super Bowl with the St. Louis Rams, was also out to prove he could catch out of the backfield.

Agnew went through all the drills Tuesday, bench pressing 225 pounds 17 times and running the 20-yard shuttle, 40-yard dash and 60-yard shuttle. He caught some teams' attention at the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl in January, which had several pro prospects, and might have gotten a bit more after participating at Northwestern's Pro Day earlier this month.

"I think I've proven that I've got quick feet, and I'm athletic, an athletic-type fullback, and I can come out of the backfield and catch the ball, and be versatile," he said.

Agnew had no carries last season -- his younger brother, Malcolm, led SIU with 180 -- but he did catch three passes for 42 yards and a touchdown.

Two other Salukis also received some NFL interest on Tuesday. Linebacker Bryan Presume, who led SIU in tackles in both of his seasons after transferring from Coffeyville (Kan.) Community College, and quarterback Kory Faulkner have both been in touch with several NFL teams.

Presume ran the 40-yard dash in 4.7 seconds on Tuesday. He ran 4.68 seconds at Northwestern's Pro Day, which was at an indoor facility, and feels like he can run even faster.

Presume said he might try to get into Georgia State's Pro Day later this month to give it another try. At 237 pounds, he said the NFL teams he's spoken to like his size and how well he moves.

Scouts see Presume as an outside linebacker in a 4-3 defense in the NFL. SIU plays a 3-4 style.

Faulkner threw for 31 of the NFL's 32 teams at Northwestern's Pro Day earlier this month and worked out in front of a scout from the St. Louis Rams on Tuesday. Twenty-five mph winds didn't help anybody at Saluki Stadium, but it gave Faulkner a chance to throw in the elements for a team that will play a lot of games out of the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis.

"I got a lot of good feedback," Faulkner said. "I've been working on my throwing, my mechanics, my feet. Just transferring my weight through my legs for the velocity on the ball. Right now they only have two guys on the roster, so a third spot is potentially open. They said they definitely like me and I'm on the radar."

The NFL draft is late this year, May 8-10. It has always been traditionally in April, but the league moved it back this year.

SIU has had 25 players drafted by NFL teams since 1955. Defensive tackles Houston Antwine and Sam Silas were both drafted by AFL teams in the 1960s. Antwine was also drafted by the Detroit Lions in the third round of the NFL draft in 1961.

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618-351-5087 / On Twitter: @THefferman


Sports reporter

Todd Hefferman has covered SIU athletics since 2008. A University of Iowa grad, he is a member of the U.S. Basketball Writers Association and a Heisman Trophy voter.

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