Two of college football’s top playmakers barred from the NFL Combine Jamie Squire/Getty Images
WACO, TX - DECEMBER 06: Ishmael Zamora #8 of the Baylor Bears takes the field before the start of the game against the Kansas State Wildcats on December 6, 2014 at McLane Stadium in Waco, Texas. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

Off the field issues are becoming more and more important to the NFL in recent years, and one of the latest moves by the NFL Combine is just more proof of that.

According to Tom Pelissero of USA Today, Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon and Baylor wide receiver Ishmael Zamora were both not invited to this year’s NFL Combine.

Related: Oklahoma players get caught celebrating in despicable fashion with disgraced RB Joe Mixon

Mixon, of course, could be a potential first round pick if this was about talent alone. However, public outcry about Mixon has risen tenfold since video emerged from a 2014 incident where Mixon struck a woman in the face. Mixon was charged with assault for the incident, and it led to a one-year suspension from the Oklahoma football team.

Zamora isn’t in the same talent tier as Mixon, but he created his own controversy earlier this year when a Snapchat video of him striking a dog repeatedly with a belt emerged on social media. Zamora was suspended three games for the video and eventually charged with a misdemeanor.

The NFL adopted a policy last year that players that have “misdemeanor or felony convictions involving violence or use of a weapon, domestic violence, sexual offense and/or sexual assault” would not be allowed at the NFL Combine.

Mixon and Zamora sort of fit that bill, although it doesn’t appear that either were technically convicted of their crimes; Mixon entered a plea deal and Zamora was cited for his incident. However, the nature of these incidents certainly leaves teams weary about taking them in the Draft, and the Combine may be doing teams a favor by blacklisting them altogether.


The NFL Combine starts on February 28 and will run for a month.

Bo was born in Atlanta, GA, and has always been a savvy sports follower. He attended Georgia Tech and has previously worked with ESPN TrueHoop, HawksHoop, and the Georgia Tech Newsroom. He covers national college football for FanBuzz.
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