Posted by Chip Patterson
After the Orange Bowl, Virginia Tech running back Darren Evans made it clear that he was going to seriously consider his options regarding the 2011 NFL Draft. The redshirt junior has one year of eligibility left with the Hokies, but has been leaning towards turning pro for some time. On Thursday, he made his decision official via a school release.
“After sitting down with family, I’ve decided to declare for the NFL Draft,” Evans said in the official release. “I felt like this is the best opportunity for me and my family. This was a tough decision because Virginia Tech was good to me and my family and I had fun. I was blessed to play at Virginia Tech and at that level of football. I have plans to graduate and I will, but the NFL has always been a dream so it’s hard to pass it up right now.”
This decision makes sense for a couple of reasons. Evans got married last winter, and the opportunity to provide for his young son is not something that he is prepared to risk. He tore his ACL the summer before the 2009 season and it forced him to miss the entire year. He has been dinged up a few times this season as well, but nothing serious enough to greatly jeopardize his status. Still, one more injury to his knee could shut the window of opportunity to play professionally. During his redshirt freshman season, Evans was the ACC Rookie of the Year and Orange Bowl MVP. When he returned to the lineup in 2010, he shared the backfield duties with 2009's star Ryan Williams and sophomore David Wilson.
“I’m very happy for Darren and his family,” running backs coach Billy Hite said. “At the same time, I’m very sad because of the kind of player he is and he’s an even better person than he is a player. We’re really going to miss him in our football program and I obviously want to wish him the best of luck with his future in the NFL.”