|Richardson (No. 34) is NFLDraftScout.com's No. 3 rated defensive tackle and projects as a first round pick in the 2013 draft. (US Presswire)|
Missouri announced on Friday that junior defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson has decided to forego his senior season and enter the 2013 NFL Draft. He set several career bests in 2012 with 75 tackles, 10.5 tackles for loss and 4.0 sacks. Richardson also had three forced fumbles, a blocked kick and a 60-yard fumble return.
“This has been my dream ever since I was a little kid,” said Richardson. “It's still not easy leaving Mizzou like this, but I know I'm ready.”
Richardson is NFLDraftScout.com's No. 3-ranked DT for next April's NFL draft and a projected mid-first-round pick. He is currently slotted in the top-20 of mock drafts by NFL Draft Analysts Rob Rang and Dane Brugler.
“I really appreciate all the support I got here at Mizzou, and I know that they will help me and my family with his next step. I'll always be a Tiger.”
The St. Louis native spent two seasons with the Tigers after two years at the JUCO level. He attended the College of the Sequoias (Calif.) out of high school and transferred to the FBS in 2010, receiving multiple offers from programs like Southern Cal before deciding to return home and enroll at Missouri.
It was a disappointing season for Missouri (5-7), which won't be playing in a bowl game for the first time since 2004. But it was a breakout year for Richardson, who finished second on the team in tackles.