BRANCH, N.J.- Two Monmouth
University players signed free agent contracts with National Football League
teams on Tuesday evening, the first day teams were allowed to sign UDFA's after
the league lockout was lifted.
Monmouth wide receiver/defensive back Chris
Hogan (Ramapo, N.J./Ramapo/Penn State) and offensive lineman Tom Ottaiano (East Hanover, N.J./Hanover
Park/Hofstra) were signed as undrafted free agents by the San Francisco 49ers
and the New York Jets, respectively.
"It's an exciting time for Chris and Tom," said Monmouth head coach Kevin
Callahan. "They have worked very hard
for this day and I am confident they will make the most of it."
Hogan, who played four seasons of lacrosse at Penn State before coming to
Monmouth to finish his eligibility in football, came in as a wide receiver for
the Hawks but had to also play defensive back after injuries decimated the
position. At wideout, he provided a big
play threat for the Hawks, scoring three touchdowns on his 12 receptions
including his first collegiate catch. Starting
with game four, he started every game at cornerback cutting down his reps at
wide receiver. He recorded two
interceptions in his first game at cornerback and finished the season with three
picks and 28 tackles. Hogan impressed
scouts at Fordham's Pro Day, where he recorded the fastest times in a number of
Ottaiano started all 11 games for the Hawks in 2011, mostly at center but showed
his versatility when he switched to guard to fill a void left by injuries. The East Hanover, N.J. native came to the
Hawks after Hofstra dropped its football program after the 2009 season. He had three years of playing experience for
the Pride, including starting at guard in the program's final year.
Monmouth has two other players currently in the NFL, Pro-Bowl wide receiver
Miles Austin with the Dallas Cowboys and tight end John Nalbone, who plays for
the Philadelphia Eagles. Austin was an
undrafted free agent, signed by the Cowboys in April of 2006, while Nalbone was
drafted in the 5th round of the 2009 NFL Draft by the Miami
Check back to www.GoMUHawks.com and to
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for more information and interviews with the players.
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