The deadline for college underclassmen to declare for the NFL Draft has passed. It wasn’t expected any Huskies would declare, and none did. ESPN.com’s Ted Miller has the list of Pac-12 players who declared. As you can see, Stanford took the biggest hit with three declaring, while USC and Cal lost two each.
As Miller notes, a few big names decided to return, including three Stanford defensive players whose presence will make the Cardinal a Pac-12 favorite again next season.
While UW did not have any players declare this year — or even any about whom there was any speculation — that may not be the case in coming years. Tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins will almost certainly have to make the choice next year of being a high-round pick or returning for a senior season (Kasen Williams and Bishop Sankey would also be eligible after the 2013 season) and Shaq Thompson after 2014.
While fans understandably hope every players stays as long as they can, players declaring early is an accepted part of the deal anymore, and also a sign of a successful program.
UW has had just one player declare early since 2003 — Chris Polk last season — a drought that coincided with the program’s fall from the top of the Pac-10/12.
Here’s a list of UW’s early entries and their eventual draft status:
1990, safety Eugene Burkhalter, not drafted
1992, defensive tackle Steve Emtman, first round (Indianapolis)
1993, quarterback Billy Joe Hobert, third round (Raiders)
1996, safety Lawyer Milloy, second round (New England)
1997, running back Corey Dillon, second round (Cincinnati)
1998, center Olin Kreutz, third round (Chicago)
1998, guard Benji Olson, fifth round (Tennessee)
1999, quarterback Brock Huard, third round (Seattle)
2001, safety Hakim Akbar, fifth round (New England)
2002, tight end Jerramy Stevens, first round (Seattle)
2003, receiver Reggie Williams, first round (Jacksonville)
2003, defensive tackle Terry Johnson, second round (Chicago)
2012, running back Chris Polk, not drafted