WACO, Texas— Baylor junior receiver Corey Coleman, the FBS leader with 20 touchdown catches, will bypass his senior season for early entry into the NFL draft.
Coleman confirmed his decision Saturday after the No. 12 Bears lost their regular-season finale 23-17 to Texas. He had been recognized before the game along with 19 seniors playing their final home games.
"Every time I think about the decision I get really sad because I love this place," Coleman said. "I'm just thankful in coach [Art] Briles for believing in me."
The three-year starter said he discussed the decision with Briles, his mother and others. He had indicated this week that he was strongly considering that.
"I think he'll play in the bowl game and then he's going to move on, which we're all in support of," Briles said. "He's done a great job for this university and this football program for four years."Coleman, who has 76 catches for a Big 12-leading 1,363 yards, said he will definitely play for the Bears (9-3, 6-3 Big 12) in their bowl game, even though that will not be the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans on New Year's Day after the loss to the Longhorns.
The Bears went into November undefeated, but lost three of their last four games.
Coleman said the way the regular season ended didn't play any part in his decision, and said a more successful season likely wouldn't have changed his mind either.
"We made the decision of what is best for me. I would have liked to have had a more successful season, but I'm not going to complain," Coleman said. "We're going to go to a bowl game. We're blessed."
This article was written by Stephen Hawkins from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.