Big 12 Teams Send 13 Early Entries On To The NFL
The deadline for college underclassmen to declare for the NFL has come and gone, as the declaration period ended this past Monday.
For the first time in three years, no Mountaineer is bypassing his senior season of college eligibility to enter the NFL, as Wendell Smallwood and Daryl Worley did in 2016 and Shelton Gibson did last year.
Juniors Will Grier, David Sills and Yodny Cajuste each considered foregoing their senior seasons, but all three announced last month that they planned to return to WVU in 2018.
The return of those three Mountaineer underclassmen bucked a national trend, as a record 106 players are leaving college with eligibility remaining and hoping to land a spot in NFL.
Of those 106, 13 are from the Big 12, which is the fourth most among Power 5 conferences. The SEC is sending out the most with 26 players leaving early, followed by the ACC (24), the Pac-12 (17) and the Big Ten (11).
Texas was among the hardest hit schools with six players departing early, a number surpassed by none but equaled by Florida State and LSU. Oklahoma, Alabama, Auburn, Miami, UCLA and USC are losing four each, while future WVU foe Tennessee is losing three, as are Clemson, Florida, Louisville and Stanford.
Below is a list of the 13 underclassmen from the Big 12 leaving early for the NFL:
Mark Andrews, TE, Oklahoma
Du’Vonta Lampkin, DT, Oklahoma
Dwayne Orso-Bacchus, T, Oklahoma
Orlando Brown, T, Oklahoma
Keke Coutee, WR, Texas Tech
Michael Dickson, P, Texas
DeShon Elliott, DB, Texas
Holton Hill, DB, Texas
Malik Jefferson, LB, Texas
Chris Warren, RB, Texas
Connor Williams, T, Texas
Dorance Armstrong, DE, Kansas
D.J. Reed, DB, Kansas State
WVU’s 2018 non-conference opponents Tennessee and N.C. State are also losing underclassmen:
Rashaan Gaulden, DB, Tennessee
Nyheim Hines, RB, NC State
John Kelly, RB, Tennesse
Reginald McKenzie, DT, Tennessee
Will Richardson, T, NC State