Running back Christian McCaffrey will sit out Stanford’s bowl diversion to concentrate on his NFL draft arrangement, he declared Monday on Twitter.
The whole team supports @CMccaffrey5 in everything and anything. Hes been a leader to this team through the easy times and tough times.
— Trenton Irwin (@trenton_4) December 19, 2016
“Very tough decision, but I have decided not to play in the Sun Bowl so I can begin my draft prep immediately,” McCaffrey wrote on Twitter. “Thx to all my teammates for their 100% support — It means a lot to me. Go Cardinal!”
No. 18 Stanford will confront North Carolina in the Hyundai Sun Bowl on Dec. 30.
McCaffrey reported Dec. 7 that he would swear off his senior season to enter the draft. He joins LSU running back Leonard Fournette as prominent players to sit out the bowl season. Fournette declared Friday that he would not play in the Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl on Dec. 31 against Louisville.
“We understand that this was a tough decision. For three years Christian has not only been a great player but a great teammate as well,” Stanford coach David Shaw said in a statement. “We wish him great success at the next level, as we continue our preparation for the Sun Bowl.”
Sophomore wide receiver Trenton Irwin tweeted that the group underpins McCaffrey.
In an announcement, Sun Bowl official chief Bernie Olivas said he was baffled, yet that he comprehends McCaffrey’s choice.
“[McCaffrey] was hurt earlier this year so I am sure that weighed on his decision,” Olivas said. “He has a tremendous NFL career ahead of him, and that might be sitting in the back of his head.”
McCaffrey increased 3,864 yards in 2015, breaking Barry Sanders’ NCAA single-season record for generally useful yardage. He won the Associated Press National Player of the Year grant and completed second in that season’s Heisman Trophy voting behind Alabama’s Derrick Henry. McCaffrey drove Stanford to a 45-16 clobbering of Iowa in the Rose Bowl, piling on a record 368 universally handy yards.
McCaffrey entered 2016 as a quicker and more grounded player than the prior year. Regardless of a middle of the season damage, he again drives the country with 2,327 useful yards and has posted 1,603 hurrying yards. His surging normal has enhanced – in spite of the general decay of Stanford’s offense – from 6.0 yards for every convey in 2015 to 6.3 meters for each conveys this season. This, consolidated with an expanded part in the Cardinal’s short-yardage assault, permitted McCaffrey to showcase his full range of skills to NFL observers.
He is ranked No. 28 on Todd McShay’s latest top 32 prospects list and is the No. 4 running back in Mel Kiper’s positional rankings.