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Oregon's De'Anthony Thomas declares for NFL draft, forgoes senior season

Oregon RB De'Anthony Thomas declared for the NFL draft on Sunday.
Oregon RB De'Anthony Thomas declared for the NFL draft on Sunday.Getty Images

De'Anthony Thomas announced Sunday evening that he will skip his senior season at the University of Oregon and declare for the NFL draft. His decision comes just two days after teammate Terrance Mitchell made the same decision.

"I am officially withdrawing from the University of Oregon to pursue a professional career in the NFL," Thomas said in a prepared statement. "I want to express my deepest appreciation and thanks to the university and all of my teammates, coaches and fans. I look forward to staying connected to the university and visiting the sidelines as often as possible."

Thomas played three seasons for the Oregon Ducks, and he played a major role helping the Ducks win the 2012 Rose Bowl vs. Wisconsin.

Thomas was originally a USC commit under then-head coach Lane Kiffin. Just hours before the signing deadline, Chip Kelly convinced Thomas to come to Oregon, where he promised Thomas the opportunity to play running back. Kiffin had originally earned Thomas' commitment to play cornerback.

Thomas holds the Oregon record for kickoff return yardage with 1,885 yards in addition to holding the Oregon record for average yards per punt return (17.1). He finishes his Oregon career with 1,890 rushing yards and 26 rushing touchdowns to go along with 1,296 receiving yards and an additional 15 touchdowns.

"De'Anthony has been a spectacular talent in college football and has been a part of some of the most memorable plays in the history of the University of Oregon," Oregon coach Mark Helfrich said. "We wish him success going forward with his career."