NASHVILLE, Tenn. -
Random ruminations while wondering whatever happened to Wesley Person. …
- Quinton Patton was a running back for the Una Bears from the time he was five years old until he was 12.
He played at La Vergne High School before going to Coffeyville CC in Kansas. He had moved to wide receiver and at 6-1, 195 pounds, no one predicted he would be an NFL draft choice.
He signed with Louisiana Tech where in 2011, he caught 79 passes for 1,202 yards and 11 TDs. He averaged 15.2 yards a catch. Last season Patton had 104 receptions for 1,392 yards and 13 TDs.
That's 183 catches for 2,594 yards and 24 TDs. Despite not playing in a BCS conference, those are NFL numbers.
The 49ers thought enough of Patton to take him in the fourth round. Maybe it was his game against Texas A&M that caught the scouts' eye. Tech lost to the Aggies, 59-57, but Patton had four touchdown receptions, three of them in the second half as he closed out his college career under Tech coach Skip Holtz.
Patton could not wait to start his NFL career under Jim Harbaugh. Literally.
That's why he was willing to buy an airline ticket at his own expense and rent a car to drive to the practice facility.
Little did Patton realize that NFL rookies are not allowed at the team's practice facility until just before the start of rookie minicamp. They had to break the news to Patton that he had to reverse his field and return home.
"He's already my favorite guy,'' Harbaugh told San Francisco's KNRB-AM as he shared Patton's story.
Needless to say, Harbaugh was duly impressed with Patton's enthusiasm.
"The fact that he would buy his own ticket, fly out here, just speaks volumes about him,'' Harbaugh said. "To be honest with you, he reminds me of me. That's something I would have done. I love it.''
Patton also got a tweet from none other than NFL Hall of Fame receiver Jerry Rice that said: "Congrats on joining the Niners.''
The 49ers open minicamp May 10. I bet Patton will be the first one in the facility, the last one to leave. And it all started for him at Una Recreation Center.
- Kevin McDermott was a walk-on tight end for three seasons at UCLA after completing his high school career at Ensworth High School under Ricky Bowers.
It wasn't until his final two years with the Bruins that he became a NFL possibility. That was when he became the team's long snapper. He had 28 career starts and played all 14 games as a junior and senior.
It was enough for the San Francisco 49ers to select McDermott as an undrafted free agent.
McDermott has a pretty good chance to make the roster as 36-year-old long snapper Brian Jennings is due to earn $940,000. Jennings reportedly has two years left on his contract. They could save a lot of money by cutting Jennings and signing McDermott. At the least, McDermott will likely make the 49ers taxi squad.
McDermott reminds me of former Titans long snapper Mike Leach. He was a tight end out of William & Mary and it was then-Titans special teams coach Alan Lowry that suggested if Leach wanted to stay in the NFL very long, he would better his chances if he could become a long snapper.
Leach did just that and enjoyed a long career by snapping a football between his legs.
- Orlando Brown Sr. played in the NFL at 6-8, 340 pounds. Prior to being injured by a thrown penalty flag weighted by ball bearings hitting him in his eye, Brown was an elite offensive lineman with the Browns and Baltimore.
Orlando Brown Jr. recently gave Tennessee a verbal commitment. He is 17 years old and packs 360 pounds on his 6-foot-7 frame. He chose the Vols over Arkansas and Oklahoma.
Orlando Brown Sr. died at 41 of diabetic ketoacidosis, a disease caused by high blood sugar and a lack of insulin.
Whether he ends up at Tennessee or not, Orlando Brown Jr. needs to get his weight under control. That is way too much weight to carry at his age.
- John Daly is at it again. Now playing primarily on the Web.com Tour, Daly walked off the University of Georgia course Friday after playing 27 holes.
He told Stadion Classic officials he had a shoulder injury, after going 5-over in 27 holes.
Daly refused to talk to the media after Thursday's round and after withdrawing. He had earlier stated he now has his life under control. His game may be another case.
On the PGA Tour, the Arkansas native has withdrawn 36 times. This marked the third time he withdrew on the Web.com Tour. In 10 PGA Tour events this year, Daly has made the cut in three.
He turned 47 years old last Sunday and is pointing to the Champions Tour, for players 50-over.
- WDRB-TV sports columnist Rick Bozich reported last week that Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino made good on his promise to get a tattoo should the Cards win the NCAA national championship.
Pitino got a Cardinal "L'' on his back along with "NCAA Champions 2013'' and the 38-5 season record.
After talking to Pitino, Bozich asked former Notre Dame and Green Bay Packers star Paul Hornung, a Louisville native, if he had a tattoo.
Hornung revealed he got a tat almost 20 years ago. It is not one just everyone can see, as it is on his right buttock. "My wife (Angela) is Italian,'' Hornung told Bozich. "I got an Italian flag for her.''
Hornung went on to tell Bozich that if his horse won the Kentucky Derby, the whole world would see his tattoo.
Whew! We're safe. Titletown Five had to win the Derby Trial just to get into the Derby field and failed to place. Hornung is part-owner of Titletown Five, trained by D. Wayne Lukas.
- This may be the most competitive training camp the Titans have had since they moved to Nashville.
Former Pro Bowl kick returner Marc Mariani is coming off a season in which he broke his leg last preseason and never suited up after that. Darius Reynaud took his place and doubled as a running back, although he is a longshot to make a roster spot as a running back. He is expected to battle Mariani as a kick/punt returner.
I don't see Fernando Velasco winning the center spot, as rookie Brian Schwenke arrives with glowing marks. You could see two rookies, Schwenke and Chance Warmack, start the season as starters on the offensive line.
Wide receiver bears watching as Kenny Britt and Nate Washington are under pressure to perform and the addition of second round draft choice Justin Hunter will push not only them, but Damian Williams and Kevin Walter as well.
- Sad to see Lakers star Kobe Bryant fighting his mother to prevent her from auctioning some of his mementos earned during high school and early in his NBA career.
An auction house in New Jersey has filed a lawsuit in Camden, attempting to have the right to sell the items after Bryant's attorneys requested the firm to cancel a planned June auction.
Pam Bryant intended to use $450,000 she stood to gain by the auction to purchase a house in Nevada. She turned down her son's offer to give her $250,000 toward the house she wanted. She refused the offer, insisting on $450,000.
Bryant's relationship with his parents has been up and down through the years. He went from high school to the Lakers. His father is Joe "Jellybean'' Bryant who played overseas professionally and currently coaches in Thailand.
Contact wkrn.com Sports Columnist Joe Biddle at firstname.lastname@example.org.