EAST LANSING, Mich. (WOOD)— A West Michigan native who helped lead Michigan State University to back-to-back bowl victories is now looking to join the National Football League.
Jack Conklin of Plainwell announced his intentions to skip his senior season at MSU and enter the 2016 NFL draft Wednesday.
The All-American offensive tackle started 38 of 39 career games with MSU, according to the university. Conklin helped lead the Spartans to a combined record of 36-5, including a 2014 Rose Bowl victory over Stanford and a 2015 Cotton Bowl Classic win over Baylor.
In a statement released Wednesday, coach Mark Dantonio said Conklin is projected to be selected in the first round of the draft.
“He’s well prepared to transition into the next chapter of his life, and we wish him nothing but the best as he chases his dream of playing in the NFL. He’s not only been a major contributor over the last three seasons, but he’s also been a tremendous ambassador for our football program,” Dantonio stated.
“Coach D was great – he gave me a chance to play Division I football when no one else believed in me. For him to give me that chance and to now be in this position is unbelievable,” Conklin added in the release.
Underclassmen have until Jan. 18 to declare their eligibility for the 2016 NFL Draft, which will take place April 28-30 in Chicago.