Dare Ogunbowale is another example of the Wisconsin Badgers football program developing a walk-on into a draftable NFL prospect. A former defensive back, he was moved to running back out of necessity in 2014, started almost the whole year out of necessity in 2015, and was a valued senior leader in 2016.
A jack-of-all-trades, master of none, Ogunbowale did a little bit of everything for the Badgers in 2016. He ran the ball, caught it, was the team’s primary pass protector on third downs, returned kicks, and did anything else the coaching staff asked of him.
Along with outside linebacker Vince Biegel, he earned so much respect from his peers he was named a team captain last season. At the 2016 Big Ten Football Kickoff Luncheon in July of last year, he also was chosen to give the student-athlete keynote speech.
Ogunbowale may not necessarily be a sexy prospect, but don’t be surprised if the Milwaukee native hears his name called in Philadelphia.
RB Dare Ogunbowale
Hand Size: 9 1/8”
Arm Length: 31 3/8”
40 Yard Dash: 4.65 secs (Combine), 4.58 secs (Pro Day)
Three Cone Drill: 6.99 secs — Earned top performer status at Combine in position group
20 Yard Shuttle: 4.34 secs (Combine), 4.22 secs (Pro Day)
Bench Press: 14 reps
Broad Jump: 10’0”
Vertical Jump: 35”
NFL Draft Highlights: Dare Ogunbowale - Wisconsin (Big Ten Network/YouTube)
Strengths: Very smooth athlete. Excellent short area quickness. Is rarely tackled one-on-one in the open field. Shows good vision as a runner. Runs with good balance, is rarely knocked over easily. Has good hands out of the backfield. Was trusted as the team’s primary pass blocker. Lauded for his leadership ability. Extremely smart player, interned at Merrill Lynch.
Weaknesses: Has added weight, but has a bit of a slight frame. Doesn’t have a dominant trait, or role. Quicker than fast, lacks long speed. Loses balance at times during his cuts, resulting in stumbling.
Summary: Ogunbowale is a football player that you want on your team. While he doesn’t stand out in any particular area, he’s a valuable asset in multiple areas. He can be a running back in a rotation, but his main roles will be as a third down back that can be dangerous as a receiver against linebackers, and can stay in and pass protect. He also adds value as a returner, and has experience playing special teams, which he’ll need to do to stick in the NFL.
Projected Round: 6-UDFA
Wisconsin Pro Day 2017: Dare Ogunbowale on the path to the NFL (B5Q/YouTube)