01/20/18- *Auden Tate, Jr, Florida State, 6-4, 225 NFL Early Entries: College Winners and Losers: Loser -- FLORIDA STATE: It was bad enough that national-title-winning coach Jimbo Fisher left for Texas A&M, but then the Seminoles had a talent drain beyond just losing star safety Derwin James, as expected. Promising receiver Auden Tate followed out the door, as did tight end Ryan Izzo, defensive end Josh Sweat, defensive tackle Jalen Wilkerson and cornerback Tavarus McFadden. Worse? See above. Clemson is going to lock down the ACC Atlantic for the fourth consecutive season. - Anthony Gimino, The Sports Xchange
01/20/18- David Sills V, Jr, West Virginia, 6-3, 203 NFL Early Entries: College Winners and Losers: Winner -- WEST VIRGINIA: The Mountaineers benefited from two early decisions that will give them one of the top pass-catch combinations in the nation. Quarterback Will Grier and receiver David Sills V (tied for the national lead in 2017 with 18 touchdown receptions) will be back for coach Dana Holgersen. - Anthony Gimino, The Sports Xchange
01/20/18- *Equanimeous St. Brown, Jr, Notre Dame, 6-4, 205 NFL Early Entries, LOSERS: Notre Dame...Guard Quenton Nelson, who completed his degree, is technically an underclassman entering the draft but there was no expectation that the fourth-year player and possible top-10 pick would return. The two losses that hurt were running back Josh Adams and receiver Equanimeous Brown. Neither is a first-round lock and both would have been focal points in the offense next season. Compounding the problem is that Irish coach Brian Kelly just dismissed two running backs and receiver Kevin Stepherson from the team. The Irish did get good news with the return of linebacker Tevon Coney and defensive tackle Jerry Tillery. - AP College Football
01/19/18- Johnnie Dixon, rJr, Ohio State, 5-11, 195 Ohio State coach Urban Meyer and his assistants annually brace for announcements about elite and not-so-elite players leaving the program early for the NFL draft. But Monday's deadline to declare came and went, and the damage wasn't so bad for the Buckeyes. There were some predictable early departures in cornerback Denzel Ward, linebacker Jerome Baker and defensive end Sam Hubbard. They were obvious NFL prospects. But other names mentioned in the NFL conversation — defensive tackle Dre'Mont Jones, running back Mike Weber and the top four receivers from last season, Parris Campbell, K.J. Hill, Terry McLaurin and Johnnie Dixon — will return.
The receivers, a unit known by the nickname "Zone 6," are especially close. They said the prospect of playing together factored into their decisions to stay around for another year. "There's still a lot of things we left on the field last year," McLaurin said on the first day of winter workouts Friday. "I didn't think we would all be back, but it's definitely exciting," said Campbell, the team's leading receiver last season with 40 receptions for 584 yards. "Sometimes it's bigger than the money," said Dixon, who led the team with eight touchdown catches. "Passing up a brotherhood like this (for another year) would be crazy." - AP College Football
01/19/18- *TreQuan Smith, rJr, Central Florida, 6-1, 210 WR Tre'Quan Smith, UCF's leading receiver the last three seasons, is a well-built pass catcher with the ball skills and downfield skills to be a playmaker. The redshirt junior graduate requires route refinement, but for a player who didn't play organized football until his junior year in high school, he is further along than expected. Smith has top-100 potential with a strong pre-draft process. -- Dane Brugler, NFLDraftScout.com
01/17/18- Kevin Stepherson, So, Notre Dame, 6-0, 185 Notre Dame wide receiver Kevin Stepherson, who was suspended for the Fighting Irish's Citrus Bowl against LSU after being accused of shoplifting, and three other players have been dismissed from the team. Athletic department spokesman Michael Bertsch said Tuesday night that Stepherson, sophomore running backs Deon McIntosh and CJ Holmes and junior defensive tackle Brandon Tiassum were no longer with the team. No other details were provided. Stepherson, a junior, caught 19 passes for 359 yards and five touchdowns this season. He was held out of the first five games of 2017, though Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly never explained why. Stepherson and Holmes were arrested in December for shoplifting at a South Bend, Indiana, area mall. McIntosh was sent home from the bowl for a violation of team rules. - AP College Football
01/15/18- *Tavares Martin Jr., Jr, Washington State, 6-0, 182 Former Washington State wide receiver Tavares Martin Jr. will forego another college season and begin preparing for the 2018 NFL Draft. Martin Jr., who was cut from the WSU roster in December and had one remaining season of eligibility, announced his decision in a heartfelt message on Twitter Saturday afternoon. In the message, Martin Jr., a native of Belle Glade, Florida – known commonly as "Muck City" – says that playing in the NFL "has been a lifelong dream of mine since the age of eight, playing pee wee football and chasing those rabbits in muck city."
Martin Jr. had burner speed for an outside receiver and was Luke Falk's top target as a junior in 2017, hauling in 70 catches for 831 yards and nine touchdowns. He would've been one of the Pac-12 Conference's top returning receivers in 2018, but Martin Jr's relationship with WSU coach Mike Leach became tenuous near the end of the 2017 season, and Leach dismissed Martin Jr. for a violation of team rules. Martin Jr. refuted that he was cut, instead claiming via Twitter, "I was dismissed from the team because I asked for my release. I never knew me asking for my release was a violation of the team rules." Asked about the sequence of events, Leach later said Martin Jr. didn't ask for his release prior to being cut. But Martin Jr. was graceful in his Twitter post, thanking both Leach and the Cougars for his three-year stint on the Palouse. - Theo Lawson, The Spokesman-Review
01/12/18- Parris Campbell, rJr, Ohio State, 6-0, 208 Ohio State wide receivers Parris Campbell and Johnnie Dixon are returning for next season. Campbell and Dixon made their intentions known via their respective post Thursday on Twitter. A redshirt sophomore, Campbell posted a video of himself with one finger raised and the caption: "One more." Campbell recorded 40 receptions for 583 yards and three touchdowns last season. He began the season with six catches for 136 yards and a touchdown in a 49-21 win over Indiana. Campbell also rushed 10 times for 132 yards and a touchdown. Dixon also made his intentions clear over social media, writing: "Unfinished business! 1 last ride #Gobucks. - The Sports Xchange
01/10/18- *Calvin Ridley, Jr, Alabama, 6-1, 190 Less than 48 hours after Alabama's dramatic win over Georgia in the national championship game, three players for the Crimson Tide announced their intention to enter the NFL Draft. Ridley, who had 63 receptions for 967 yards and five touchdowns this season, later confirmed his future plans via social media. "Preparing for a life after college football, regardless of what your future may hold, can be a scary proposition for many athletes especially those who DID NOT attend the University of Alabama," Ridley wrote on Twitter. "Having been thoroughly prepared for that next step, I am truly ready, because in the beginning, I chose THE RIGHT SCHOOL." Projected to be a first-round draft pick, Ridley finished his career with the Crimson Tide with 224 receptions for 2,781 yards and 19 touchdowns. - The Sports Xchange
01/10/18- *Calvin Ridley, Jr, Alabama, 6-1, 190 Alabama junior wide receiver Calvin Ridley is entering the NFL draft. Ridley announced his decision in a Twitter post Wednesday, two days after the Crimson Tide won the second national championship of his three-year career. Widely projected as a first-round pick, Ridley easily led the Tide in receiving. He had 63 catches for 967 yards while no other wide receiver caught more than 14 balls. Ridley's 7-yard touchdown catch with 3:49 left tied the title game against Georgia and Alabama won 26-23 in overtime. The 6-foot-1, 190-pounder is second in school history with 220 career catches and third with 2,749 yards. He tied Dennis Homan for second in career touchdown catches with 18. Alabama has several players with eligibility left who are projected high in the draft, including defensive tackle Da'Ron Payne and safety Minkah Fitzpatrick. - AP College Football
01/10/18- *Deon Cain, Jr, Clemson, 6-1, 190 Clemson receiver Deon Cain is joining the growing list of Tigers' underclassmen declaring for the NFL draft. The school announced Cain's decision Wednesday. He joins receiver Ray-Ray McCloud, safety Van Smith and offensive lineman Taylor Hearn as Tigers giving up their remaining eligibility to turn pro. Cain is a 6-foot-1, 190-pound junior from Tampa, Florida. He was Clemson's second leading receiver with 58 catches for 734 yards and six touchdowns. The speedy Cain is projected as a mid-round selection in the draft. There are several other Clemson players with eligibility left who have decisions to make before the January 15th deadline to declare for the NFL draft, most notably defensive lineman Clelin Ferrell and Christian Wilkins, linebacker Kendall Joseph and offensive lineman Mitch Hyatt. - AP College Football
01/09/18- Malcolm Williams, Jr, Coastal Carolina, 5-10, 185 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE THIRD TEAM (COACHES/MEDIA): Malcolm Williams (Coastal Carolina, WR, Jr.),...Williams (Shreveport, La.) only caught two passes for 17 yards last season, but broke through in 2017 to lead the Chanticleers in receptions (43), receiving yards (793) and receiving touchdowns (seven). The junior finished with 1,093 all-purpose yards (793 receiving, 73 rushing, eight punt returns, 219 kick returns) to rank eighth on the CCU single-season list. Also, his 18.44 yards per catch ranks second on the CCU single-season list while he ranks sixth on the CCU seasonal chart in receiving yards, seventh in receiving touchdowns and ninth in receptions.
Williams, like Abercrombie, closed the season in fine fashion to secure postseason honors. Versus Georgia Southern, he had four receptions for 120 yards, including touchdowns of 67 and 37 yards. Williams opened league play with a record-setting performance at UL Monroe and was named the team's Offensive MVP. He set the CCU record and had the second-best, single-game effort in Sun Belt history with 266 receiving yards on nine receptions -- one shy of the CCU single-game record. - Coastal Carolina Football
01/09/18- Chris Jones, rSr, Coastal Carolina, 5-10, 170 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): Chris Jones (Coastal Carolina, WR, Sr.),...Jones (Coatesville, Pa.) saw his numbers suffer a little after missing two games early in the season due to injury. While he only caught 26 passes for 536 yards with four touchdowns, Jones set a CCU record with an average of 20.62 yards per reception, breaking his own mark of 18.3 set in 2015 when he was named second team All-Big South as both a receiver and punt returner. His best game of 2017 came in a near upset at Arkansas as he hauled in four passes for 106 yards (receptions of 43, 22, 31 and 10 yards) and a touchdown to be named the team's Offensive MVP. - Coastal Carolina Football
01/09/18- Deondre Douglas, Jr, Troy, 6-0, 197 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE SECOND TEAM (COACHES/MEDIA): Deondre Douglas (Troy, WR, Jr.),...Douglas has a pair of game-winning catches for the Trojans this season, including to win the Sun Belt title at Arkansas State. - Troy Football
01/09/18- Damion Willis, Jr, Troy, 6-3, 194 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): Damion Willis (Troy, WR, Jr.),...Willis caught 31 passes for 485 yards and a touchdown and heads into the New Orleans Bowl as Troy's second-leading receiver. - Troy Football
01/09/18- Elijah King, Sr, Texas State, 6-1, 190 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): Elijah King (Texas State, WR, Sr.),...King ranked sixth among Sun Belt Conference leaders with 55 receptions and seventh among league leaders with 750 receiving yards. He also caught three TD passes. His best game of the season was versus New Mexico State when he caught a career-high 11 passes for 129 yards and a TD. His 11 receptions tied for the second-highest single game total in the Sun Belt this season. He also caught seven passes for 103 yards and TD against Georgia State and had six catches for 112 yards against Appalachian State. He ended his collegiate career with six receptions for 109 yards at Troy and is graduating with a bachelor's degree in applied arts and sciences this December. - Texas State Football
01/09/18- Jamarius Way, Jr, South Alabama, 6-3, 215 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE SECOND TEAM (COACHES/MEDIA): Jamarius Way (South Alabama, WR, Jr.),...In his first season with the program, Way paced the Jags with 47 receptions, 762 yards receiving and an average of 16.2 yards per catch, tying for the team lead with three touchdown catches as well. In addition to ranking among the top 10 in the league in receiving yards per game, the Belle Glade, Fla., native finished the campaign third in USA's season record books in total yards receiving and sixth in catches as he led the team in receptions six times and receiving yards on six occasions; Way also paced the Jaguars with 799 all-purpose yards. - South Alabama Football
01/09/18- O.J. Clark, rSo, New Mexico State, 5-07, 163 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): OJ Clark (New Mexico State, WR, RS-So.),...O.J. Clark, Terrill Hanks, Roy Lopez and Anthony Muse wrapped up the list of NM State honorees with Sun Belt Honorable Mention nods. - New Mexico State Football
01/09/18- Anthony Muse, rSo, New Mexico State, 5-11, 160 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): Anthony Muse (New Mexico State, WR, RS-So.),...O.J. Clark, Terrill Hanks, Roy Lopez and Anthony Muse wrapped up the list of NM State honorees with Sun Belt Honorable Mention nods. - New Mexico State Football
01/08/18- *Deontay Burnett, Jr, Southern California, 5-11, 170 WR Deontay Burnett announced Monday on Twitter that he's forgoing his senior season. The 20-year-old Burnett was the Trojans' leading receiver in 2017 with 86 catches for 1,114 yards and nine touchdowns. His career totals in three seasons were 152 career receptions for 1,897 yards and 16 touchdowns. NFLDraftScout.com ranks Burnett as the seventh-best wide receiver in the draft.
01/08/18- *Calvin Ridley, Jr, Alabama, 6-1, 190 Alabama receiver Calvin Ridley is likely a first-round NFL draft pick regarded as one of the nation's best at his position, but you might not have noticed watching the fourth-ranked Crimson Tide's last couple of games. A run-oriented offense with a scrambling quarterback doesn't always throw the ball his way with the same regularity that other offenses target their best receivers going into the national championship game Monday night at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Georgia's Javon Wims and Terry Godwin are in a similar situation, even if they're not as heralded. And none are complaining.
"I play for a championship every year," Ridley said. "I'm very happy at this school. I know what I'm capable of and once I do get those touches I'll make it happen." The three receivers enter the title game with two 100-yard receiving games between them, both courtesy of Ridley . Thirty FBS players have 1,000 receiving yards, and none of them will be in this game. Ridley is one deep ball away from joining them with 935 yards and four touchdowns. He's regarded by some analysts as the top receiving prospect in the upcoming NFL draft. "He's a great receiver," Alabama quarterback Jalen Hurts said. "He makes plays, he knows how to get open, and he's a really good player and a really hard player to stop." - AP College Football
01/08/18- Marcus Green, rJr, Louisiana-Monroe, 5-08, 191 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE FIRST TEAM (COACHES/MEDIA): Marcus Green (ULM, All-Purpose, Jr.),...The 5-foot-8, 191-pound Green also produced an NCAA FBS-best six scoring plays covering 70 or more yards during the regular season. He also led the team with 37 explosive plays (20+ yards: 18 kickoff returns, 14 receptions, 3 rushes and 2 punt returns). Green led the Warhawks in receptions (55), receiving yards (847) and 100-yard receiving games (4). His five TD receptions ranked second on the team. Green finished fourth on the team in rushing with 15 carries for 184 yards (12.3 avg.).
The Pontotoc, Mississippi, native was selected Sun Belt Special Teams Player of the Week four times in 2017 (vs. Coastal Carolina, Georgia State, Appalachian State and Arkansas State). "It's exciting to see Marcus Green rewarded with all-conference honors at multiple positions," ULM head coach Matt Viator said. "He's become a complete football player, who can impact the game in so many ways. Marcus had more than 50 catches, rushed for nearly 200 yards and had nearly 1,000 combined kick return yards. He's a legitimate home-run threat every time he touches the football." - Louisiana-Monroe Football
01/08/18- RJ Turner, rSo, Louisiana-Monroe, 6-0, 204 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE THIRD TEAM (COACHES/MEDIA): RJ Turner (ULM, WR, So.),...The 6-2, 204-pound Turner led the Warhawks in TD receptions (6) and finished second in receiving yards (686) and third in receptions (39). His 17.6 yards per catch led the Sun Belt. He caught multiple passes in 10 of 11 games and posted two 100-yard receiving games. The Natchitoches, Louisiana, native had three catches for 111 yards in the home finale against Arkansas State, including a 27-yard TD grab late in the third quarter. Turner set season highs for receptions (6), receiving yards (134) and TD receptions (2) against Appalachian State. His 50-yard TD reception with 23 seconds left against App State proved to be the game winner. "It was fun to watch a healthy RJ Turner perform this season," Viator said. "He has made great strides over the last two years, and as a result, he's playing with more confidence. RJ has the ability to make explosive plays and dominate a game. He has deceptive speed because of his long strides and the jumping ability to make the 50/50 catches down field. He's also big enough and strong enough to catch the pass underneath, break tackles and turn it into a big play. RJ picks up a lot of yards after the catch." - Louisiana-Monroe Football
01/08/18- Brian Williams, Sr, Louisiana-Monroe, 6-2, 218 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE HONORABLE MENTION (COACHES/MEDIA): Brian Williams (ULM, WR, Sr.),...Four other Warhawks have received All-Sun Belt honorable mention: sophomore quarterback Caleb Evans, junior linebacker David Griffith, fifth-year senior defensive lineman Caleb Tucker and senior wide receiver Brian Williams. - Louisiana-Monroe Football
01/08/18- Marcus Green, rJr, Louisiana-Monroe, 5-08, 191 2017 ALL-SUN BELT CONFERENCE FIRST TEAM (COACHES/MEDIA): Marcus Green (ULM, Return Specialist, Jr.),...During the regular season, Green led the Sun Belt in all-purpose yards (167.3 yards per game) and ranked among the league leaders in kickoff returns (second with 32.4 avg.), receiving yards (fourth at 70.6 ypg.) and receptions (fifth at 4.6 rpg.). He also ranked among the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision leaders in kickoff returns for touchdowns (tied for first with 4), combined kick return yards (second at 977), all-purpose yards (third) and kickoff returns (fifth). His four kickoff returns for TDs represent ULM and Sun Belt single-season records. - Louisiana-Monroe Football