When a player screwed up, TCU coach Gary Patterson would send said player - usually then freshman defensive end Stansly Maponga - to do a series of nasty conditioning drills that included rope work, pushing a heavy ball up a steep hill, etc. They were called "Mapongas".
Any time a player screws up during a TCU practice, they are often "asked" to do Mapongas.
"I'm glad that's part of my legacy here," Maponga said at TCU today after completing his Pro Day workouts for the NFL scouts and coaches. "Those were fun."
Even though Patterson tried like a dog to talk Maponga out of it, and this rookie class is heavy on defensive linemen, he is going to the NFL with one year left of college eligibility remaining.
"He did. It is what it is," Maponga said. "I appreciate everything he did for me and my family."
It's the impossible equation where the coach wants to keep the player because he knows it's going to make his team better vs. the player, who either needs to, or wants to, go.
It sounds like family is a big reason why Maponga is leaving. He said his mother is working three jobs, and Maponga himself recently became a father to a little girl, who is four months old. A handful of people around the program said they thought Maponga was also just tired of school as well.
Maponga, who is battling a recurring foot problem that may require surgery, is being talked about as a fourth round pick. At TCU's pro day, his 40-yard dash times were 4.84 and 4.85.
Coaches from three NFL teams attended the pro day - Eagles, Dolphins, Steelers - and he said he feels comfortable either as a defensive end or outside linebacker. He said he has a scheduled meeting with the Atlanta Falcons soon.
The one NFL scout I talked to liked him a lot, and thought he would be a fourth or fifth round pick.
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