Middletown’s Shilique Calhoun Selected by Oakland Raiders in Third Round of NFL Draft
Michigan State defensive end Shilique Calhoun, who played for Middletown North from 2007 through 2010, is the latest Shore Conference alumni to reach the National Football League.
Calhoun was selected by the Oakland Raiders with pick No. 12 in the third round (No. 75 overall) of the 2016 NFL Draft on Friday night at the Auditorium Theatre in Chicago. He is the highest draft pick from the Shore Conference since Vinny Curry, who played collegiately at Marshall after graduating from Neptune, was selected by the Philadelphia Eagles in the second round of the 2012 NFL Draft.
The 6-foot-5, 250-pound Calhoun had a decorated college career in East Lansing. He was a three-time first-team All-Big Ten selection and a three-time second-team All-American. He played in 54 games, which is second in program history, including 42 starts. Calhoun set a Michigan State record with 268 yards in tackles for a loss and is second all-time with 27 sacks and fourth in tackles for a loss with 44. In 2015 he led the Spartans with 10.5 sacks and also had a career-high 49 tackles.
“He can rush the passer, that’s what he does,” ESPN analyst Todd McShay said of Calhoun. “He’s gotta get bigger, and he’s gotta get stronger versus the run. I thought there were some times where he could have done a better job setting the edge.
“But some guys just have instincts and a knack for getting to the quarterback and finishing. And Calhoun’s one of those guys.”
The consensus scouting report is that Calhoun, who played as a hand-in-the-dirt defensive end in college, will be a 3-4 outside linebacker in the NFL. The Raiders, under defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr., play a 3-4 defense.