Four Panthers join the NFL ranks

Former FIU defensive end Tourek Williams was selected in the sixth round of the NFL Draft by the San Diego Chargers. Williams had 19 sacks and 35.5 tackles for loss over his four years for the Panthers. Carlos Pernia / The Beacon File Photo

Rhys Williams/Staff Writer 

Everyone in Panther nation was watching the first round of this week’s NFL draft anxiously awaiting former Safety Jonathan Cyprien to get drafted. Even with falling out of the first round he wasn’t around for a long time on Day two, being the first pick in the second round, number 33 overall, to the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Former Defensive end and Cyprien’s teammate Tourek Williams had to wait a while longer to get his call, which came as pick number 11 in the sixth round, number 179 overall, from the San Diego Chargers and Head Coach Mike McCoy who is in his first year with that franchise. McCoy replaces Norv Turner, brother of FIU’s own first year Head Coach Ron Turner. He will join controversial player Manti T’eo on the Chargers defense.

Williams, had 19 sacks over his four years for the Panthers along with 35.5 tackles for loss in that time span as well. After he was selected, he showed his excitement via twitter.

“#ChargerUp Boy oh Boy I can’t wait to hit up San Diego,” Williams tweeted. That was directly followed by, “Thank God for everything!”

Caylin Hauptmann, Offensive Lineman and Jose Cheeseborough, Cornerback did not receive that draft call before the end of the seventh and final round of the NFL Draft. However, both players have signed undrafted free agent contracts with different teams.

Haputmann has signed with American Football Conference, North division Cleveland Browns. The Browns, who went 5-12 in the 2012 season, missed the playoffs. He will join first round pick, Barkevious Mingo, a defensive lineman from Louisiana State University among with four draftees and 16 other undrafted free agents.

Cheeseborough is going into training camp with the Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens. The Ravens are also conference and divisional rivals with Browns. He will join fellow defensive back Matt Elam out of the University of Florida along with nine other draftees and four other undrafted free agents.

It is unknown as to whether or not Cheeseborough saw the excitement that he caused on twitter even before he was taken by the Ravens, with people saying that he had one of the best names in the draft along with Browns first rounder Mingo and Detroit Lions first round draft choice Ezekiel “Ziggy” Ansah out of Birmingham-Young University.

With tweets like “I really hope the Vikes take CB Jose Cheeseborough out of FIU. His name just screams talent,” and “Now we’ve drafted Barkevious Mingo, we need Jose Cheeseborough to have to best names in the draft. #BrownsDraft #NFLDraft,” before the draft, it was not a surprise that after he was taken people would go to twitter again.

“Jose Cheeseborough to the Ravens! #pantherpride,” one Panther fan exclaimed over twitter.

This year marks the most professional filled draft for the Panthers with four signings by former players with possible more to come in Wayne Times who is a wide receiver, Josh Brisk a punter, and Jack Griffin, who was the former FIU placekicker being the next possible undrafted free agent signings from the 2012 team.

About the Author

Rhys Williams
: Sports Director, Class of 2016, Physical Education: Coaching (Major), Communication Arts (Minor), Sports Enthusiast with a Focus on Football and Track & Field.