Oregon running back LaMichael James, a Heisman Trophy finalist in 2010, is skipping his senior year and declaring himself eligible for the NFL draft.
“I feel like I’m leaving with a bang,” said James, less than a week after he helped the Ducks to a victory over Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl.
A 5-foot-9, 195-pound All-American, James rushed for a school-record 1,805 yards this season despite missing two games with a dislocated right elbow. He led the nation with an average of 150.4 yards rushing per game.
James is Oregon’s career leader in yards rushing with 5,082. He is the first Pac-12 player to have three straight 1,500-yard seasons.
In Oregon’s 45-38 Rose Bowl Game presented by Vizio victory over the Badgers, James rushed for 159 yards and a touchdown.
At a news conference Friday afternoon, James said he’s been told he’s likely a third-round pick. He hopes to improve his status with workouts.
James has his agent and training plans in order, sources told ESPN’s Joe Schad on Friday.
James is one term away from completing a degree in general social science, or sociology. He may take the winter term off to train before returning to school in the spring to finish up.
Good luck, LaMichael!