Frey chasing NFL dream
ap filephoto Robbie Frey, shown returning a kick 100 yards for a touchdown during a 2009 game against Rutgers, is chasing his NFL dreams after a strong showning at a Regional Combine last month.
Robbie Frey had the same dream growing up that thousands and thousands of young football players have.
For the overwhelming majority of those youngsters, that dream never turns into reality.
Frey is hoping to be one the few exceptions
Frey, the former Lehighton High School standout who enjoyed collegiate success at both the University of Connecticut and Kutztown University, is now chasing the ultimate dream - a shot at the National Football League.
"I think it's the dream of every kid who grows up playing football to one day play in the NFL," said Frey. "I know it was always a dream of mine.
"So when the opportunity came along to gage and possibly enhance my chances of reaching that goal, I knew I had to try everything in my power to take advantage of it."
That's exactly what Frey did.
The opportunity for Frey came during the last weekend in February.
At the same time that the top 300 or so pro prospects were working out in front of every NFL team and a national television audience at the NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana, Frey was attending a scouting combine as well.
Frey was at the New York Jets' practice facility in Florham Park, New Jersey. He was part of a group of over 200 athletes that were put through a lot of the same drills and tests that Andrew Luck and friends were going through in Indianapolis - although with significantly less fanfare.
"I had heard about the regional combines and knew I wanted to give it a shot," said Frey. "You had to go online and fill out a form with information about your football experience.
"The NFL then lets you know if you are allowed to participate."
Frey's credentials were more than enough to get him a look.
First, there was an impressive three-year career at UConn where he excelled as a backup tailback (over 500 career yards and seven touchdowns) and on special teams (two kickoff returns for TDs). He followed that up with a big senior season after transferring to Division II Kutztown, rushing nearly 1,200 yards and 11 touchdowns.
"The combine was a great experience," said Frey. "There were guys there that I played with at both UConn and Kutztown and some guys I played against in college as well."
Florham Park was one of eight regional combines that the NFL hosts. The ultimate reward for the regional participants is an invitation to the Super Regional Combine in Detroit on March 30-31.
Frey said he was pleased with the numbers he put up at the combine, where athletes run sprints, lift weights and do agility drills.
The NFL must have been pleased as well.
"I got a call last week telling me I advanced to the Super Regional Combine," said Frey. "That was pretty exciting.
"Now I will get a chance to go through the same drills and tests, but this time in front of a lot of NFL talent evaluators. This is a huge opportunity for me."
It's an opportunity that Frey hopes will lead to a future in pro football.
"This is a chance for me to get closer to my dream of playing in the NFL," Frey said. "I plan on taking full advantage of it."
Frey knows the odds of making it on an NFL roster.
"I've been working out at CoreXcell in Catasauqua since my senior season at Kutztown ended," he said. "I've put on 15 pounds of muscle since the season ended without losing any speed. I'm up to 210 pounds and I feel great.
"I'm able to workout and still maintain my studies so I haven't put my schooling on hold to prepare for this opportunity. I still want to be a teacher and a football coach, and if this doesn't work out, I'm ready to begin that part of my life."
But before that happens, Frey still has a dream to chase.