Monday, January 6, 2014
Clemson, SC—Clemson junior Sammy Watkins announced Monday that he will make himself available for the 2014 NFL draft. Watkins leaves Clemson as a three-time first-team All-American and the school’s record holder in terms of receptions and reception yards on a game, season and career basis. Even though he played just three years, he set 23 Clemson records.
“I am very thankful for the past three years at Clemson University that have enabled me to grow academically, athletically, and spiritually,” said Watkins. “After much prayerful consideration, I have decided to take the next step in pursuing my lifelong dream of playing in the NFL.
“I would not have this opportunity without the support and encouragement of my family, coaches, teammates, and the best fans in college football. No matter where my next steps may lead, I will always take pride in the PAW and will forever be a part of the Clemson family.”
Watkins finished his Clemson career in grand style as he was named the Most Outstanding Player of the Discover Orange Bowl. He had 16 receptions for 227 yards and two scores in Clemson’s 40-35 win over sixth-ranked Ohio State.
The 16 receptions and 227 receiving yards established a Clemson single game record and an Orange Bowl record. The 16 receptions also tied an ACC standard for any game and established a record for a BCS Bowl game. The 227 yards were the second most receiving yards in any BCS Bowl game.
Watkins finished the 2013 season with 101 receptions for 1464 yards and 12 touchdowns. He broke Aaron Kelly’s record for receptions in a season (88 in 2007) and receiving yards (DeAndre Hopkins 1405 in 2012).
The native of Fort Myers, FL was a first-team All-American this year by the American Football Coaches Association and was a finalist for the 2013 Biletnikoff Award.