Ohio State all-Big Ten Conference defensive tackle Johnathan Hankinsannounced today he will forego his senior season of eligibility with the Buckeyes and make himself available for the 2013 NFL Draft and an opportunity to continue his career at the next level.
“I have decided, with the support of my family, to forego my senior season at Ohio State in order to enter the NFL Draft,” Hankins said Monday. “I will always be grateful for the family I have gained here at Ohio State.
“I want to thank coach Meyer, coach Vrabel and strength coach Marotti for bringing the best out of me as a football player and person, and for their constant support. I also want to thank coach Tressel and coach Heacock for recruiting me and giving me an opportunity to be a part of this great school and great program.”
Hankins, who is 20, appeared in 38 games the past three years and started every game in 2011 and 2012 – 25 total. He was fourth on the team in tackles in 2011 with 67 stops, including 11 tackles-for-loss (-24 yards), and this past season he ranked fifth with 55 tackles, including 4.0 TFLs (-22).
“I have enjoyed coaching and getting to know Johnathan Hankins over the past year,” Ohio State coach Urban Meyer said. “His hard work on and off the field has given him an opportunity to move on to the next level. The coaching staff and I wish him all the best.”
Hankins, who wraps up his Ohio State career with 138 tackles (58 solos; 80 assists), including 16.5 TFLs (-55 yards) and five quarterback sacks, was a member of four prestigious award/trophy watch lists entering the 2012 season – the Lombardi, Outland, Bednarik and Nagurski.
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