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2015 NFL DRAFT

Aaron Donald, DT

School: Pittsburgh  |  Conference: ACC
College Experience: Senior  |  Hometown: Pittsburgh, PA
Height/Weight: 6-1 / 285 lbs.
Projected Ranking
OverallPositionProj. Rnd.
1011
Player News
05/12/2014 - Snead said the Rams were so glad to get Donald that they never considered trading down. "We're jacked with the pick," he said. "He's very productive and way ahead at this point in hand use. He's an impressive young man." Although Donald is 6-foot-1, 285 pounds, Snead said he won't be asked to get bigger. "His game isn't size," Snead said. "He's short, but that helps him get leverage. Getting bigger wouldn't help him. His game is not size. His game is to penetrate." And that he did, totaling 66 tackles for loss in four seasons at Pittsburgh, including 28.5 in 2013. For his part, Donald said he's "excited" to be with the Rams. "They have the best defensive line in the NFL and I'm pumped up to be a part of it," he said. "I can't wait to get with the coaches and get to work." - The Sports Xchange

05/12/2014 - A closer look at the Rams' picks: Round 1/13 - Aaron Donald, DT, 6-1, 285, Pittsburgh...Donald is a fierce penetrator and had 28.5 tackles for loss last season. He doesn't have great size, but his quickness allows him to make plays. The Rams will likely use him to start out on passing downs. Some have compared him to standout Bengals defensive tackle Geno Atkins. - The Sports Xchange

05/08/2014 - 2014 DRAFT SCOUT FINAL TOP 100: 10/1. Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh, 6-1, 285, 4.62, 1...Short but not small at 6-foot, 3/4 inches, 285 pounds, Donald was the most dominant defensive college football player in 2013 after totaling 59 tackles, including 28.5 for a loss, 11 sacks, 16 QB hurries, four forced fumbles and a blocked extra point. He received the whole list of famous name awards to commemorate his season. Despite an array of schemes designed to slow him down, Donald was an unblockable force. He followed that season with great Senior Bowl workout and then stole the show at the combine where he blasted through 40 yards in 4.68, had a 32-inch vertical and benched 225 pounds 35 times. Frankly: Donald is a can't-miss, hyperactive disrupter who dazes opponents at the snap with a dazzling John Randle-type skill set. Unlike Randle, who went undrafted then made Hall of Fame, Donald will begin his career as a first round pick, says here. - Frank Cooney, NFLDraftScout.com

05/06/2014 - Dane Brugler's 2014 NFL Draft Final Top-50: 12. Aaron Donald DT, Pittsburgh (6-1, 285, 4.68, SR)...While Clowney received most of the publicity, Donald had the best Combine performance among the defensive linemen with a 4.68 40-yard dash, 32" vertical jump and 35 reps on the bench press. He's a prototypical 3-technique with disruptive ability. - Dane Brugler, NFLDraftScout.com

05/06/2014 - The Sports Xchange 2014 NFL Draft Best Team Fit: Dallas Cowboys...DT Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh: Donald is the best 3-technique tackle in the draft. He is a perfect fit for the 4-3 defense designed by Monte Kiffin and Rod Marinelli. He is a quick, explosive player who gets to the quarterback. He could go in the top 10, but if he falls to 12, the Cowboys will consider moving up to take him. - Frank Cooney, The Sports Xchange

05/06/2014 - The Sports Xchange 2014 NFL Draft Best Team Fit: Chicago Bears...DT Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh: He made more than 100 plays behind the line of scrimmage and is easily the best disrupter in the draft. It's not just as a pass rusher. He comes up with tackles for losses, as well. The Bears can't say with great certainty that they already have a defensive tackle that can disrupt unless they're looking at a 33-year-old rehabbed player like Jeremiah Ratliff. The chief stated goal of Emery when last season ended was to get "younger" on defense. This does it, and it's a pick worth moving up to make. - Frank Cooney, The Sports Xchange

05/06/2014 - Five players who should be on the Minnesota Vikings' draft radar...DT Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh: The Vikings invested big dollars ($31.5 million over five years) in Joseph and a first-round pick a year ago in Sharrif Floyd but neither is a premium pass-rusher like Donald, who is earning comparisons from some to Vikings' Hall of Famer John Randle. Like Randle, Donald is a virtual Energizer Bunny, demonstrating rare hustle for an interior lineman. He's explodes off the snap and uses his natural leverage advantage and surprising power to overwhelm blockers and is effective against both the run and pass. Zimmer had the benefit of a talented rotation in Cincinnati and may see Donald as the type of interior pass rusher to help minimize the great quarterbacks of the division. - Rob Rang, NFLDraftScout.com

02/27/2014 - 2014 NFL COMBINE: 10 TAKEAWAYS FROM INDIANAPOLIS: 5. Pittsburgh's Aaron Donald stole Clowney's spotlight, dazzling during combine drills the same way he did throughout the 2013 season. Thought to be undersized at 6-0, 285 at Pittsburgh, played big last season and is getting bigger in the post-season. His explosive power was obvious in games, were be blew up the line of scrimmage and led the nation with average sacks per game (1.6) and tackles for loss (2.4). On Monday, he showed why. He blasted through 40 yards in 4.68, had a 32-inch vertical and benched 225 pounds 35 times. This should validate that this mighty mite of an interior lineman -- think John Randle skill set -- could move up in the first round of the draft. - The Sports Xchange

02/20/2014 - 2014 NFL Draft Scout Pre-Combine Top 64 Prospects: 22. Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh, 6-1, 288, 4.93, 1...Donald was the most dominant and decorated defensive college football player in 2013 after totaling 59 tackles, including 28.5 for a loss, 11 sacks, 16 QB hurries, four forced fumbles and a blocked extra point. Per NFLDraftScout.com, he was an unblockable force from his defensive tackle position despite an array of schemes designed to slow him down. He was the the first Pitt defensive player to be a unanimous All-America selection since legendary defensive end Hugh Green in 1980. - Frank Cooney, The Sports Xchange

01/25/2014 - 2014 Senior Bowl, Helped Themselves: Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh - It was Donald, not Ford, who earned most of the buzz early in the week, whipping interior offensive linemen with his quickness, tenacity and underrated strength. Like Ford, Donald's size (6-foot-1, 288 pounds) limits his fits in the NFL but his ability to pressure quarterbacks could earn him a first round selection. - Rob Rang, NFLDraftScout.com

01/21/2014 - 2014 Senior Bowl: 10 observations from Monday's North practice...1. DT Aaron Donald was an unstoppable force on Monday. Like his play all season, the Pitt defensive tackle was extremely quick in drills and was relentless from snap to whistle. His burst and anticipation off the snap and active energy to fight through and around blocks make him tough for any blocker to handle. Donald repeatedly victimized Baylor OG Cyril Richardson at practice, winning with leverage, hustle and fluidity that Richardson has likely never seen before on the football field. Donald's skill-set is ideal for one-on-one drills so he should shine, but the NFL team that drafts him will get a really good football player. - Dane Brugler, NFLDraftScout.com

01/21/2014 - 2014 Senior Bowl Tuesday: Trio of lineman highlight physical North practice...Donald's burst makes him a terror during individual pass-rush drills but at a shade under 6-foot-1 and 288 pounds, he projects best as a pass-rush specialist three-technique defensive tackle in the 4-3 alignment. A team in need of an interior pass rusher certainly could justify selecting him in the first round because Donald could emerge as a 8-10 sack threat in the NFL but he'll almost certainly be doing so as a rotational player -- which not every team in the league is comfortable to dedicating a first round pick towards. - Rob Rang, NFLDraftScout.com

01/20/2014 - 2014 SENIOR BOWL, DEFENSIVE LINE: Top player: Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh...Despite lacking ideal size and frame for an interior rusher, Donald is an active, energetic player who uses first step quickness and natural leverage to power into the backfield. He won't be a fit for everyone, but Donald has a relentless motor to fight through the whistle and is a pesky guy to block. - Dane Brugler, NFLDraftScout.com

12/26/2013 - PLAYERS TO WATCH: Bowling Green is making its 11th appearance in a bowl game, and the Falcons are 4-6, with the last win coming in the 2004 GMAC Bowl, now the GoDaddy.com Bowl. Pitt is playing in its 11th bowl since 2000 and its sixth consecutive since 2008. The Panthers are 12-17 all-time in bowl games. DT Aaron Donald of Pitt is the Atlantic Coast Conference defensive player of the year. He is a disruptive defender with 26 1/2 tackles for losses, and 10 sacks this season. He also has 16 quarterback hurries. - The Sports Xchange

12/26/2013 - CBSSPORTS.COM ALL-AMERICANS: FIRST-TEAM DEFENSE AS NFL DRAFT PROSPECTS: DT - Aaron Donald, Sr., Pittsburgh: Generating an eye-popping 26 tackles for loss (including eight sacks) in 2013 make Donald our Defensive Player of the Year, along with winning the Nagurski and Outland Trophies as the nation's dominant defensive lineman. But NFL scouts may not be nearly as excited about his potential as the media, considering Pitt's star defensive tackle's undersized frame. At only 6-foot, 285-pounds, Donald relies more on his burst and quick hands to penetrate rather than power to hold up at the point of attack, making his best fit as a three-technique in the 4-3 alignment. - Rob Rang, NFLDraftScout.com

12/13/2013 - 2013 ALL-ACC FIRST TEAM (COACHES): DT-Aaron Donald, Sr., Pitt (35)...A hometown product of Pittsburgh, Pa., the 6-foot, 285-pound Donald leads the nation with 26.5 tackles for lost yardage (2.2 per game). The senior has forced four fumbles while registering 10 quarterback sacks. Donald has 54 total tackles in addition to 16 quarterback hurries, two pass break-ups and a blocked extra point that proved the difference in Pitt's one-point ACC win over Syracuse on Nov. 23. His tackles behind the line of scrimmage have resulted in total losses of 130 yards. Donald received five National Defensive Player of the Week awards, and was twice named the ACC Defensive Lineman of the Week. With 28.5 career sacks, he is tied for second among active NCAA FBS players. - Pitt football

12/13/2013 - 2013 WALTER CAMP FIRST TEAM ALL-AMERICAN: DL Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh, 6-0 285, Sr., Pittsburgh, PA...Donald became one of the most decorated players in Pitt history on Thursday night as he added to his list of major awards, ending the night with four on the year. He leads the nation in tackles for loss (2.2 per game), while ranking 10th in forced fumbles (tied, 0.33 per game) and 13th in sacks (tied, 0.83 per game). Perhaps his most impressive statistic this season: of his 54 total tackles, nearly half have been behind the line of scrimmage (26.5). A graduate of Penn Hills High School, Donald has 28.5 sacks for his collegiate career, the second most among active players and the highest total by an interior lineman. - Pittsburgh football

12/12/2013 - 2013 CHUCK BEDNARIK AWARD FINALIST (DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR): Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh...Donald is the keystone of Pitt's defense and a constant disruptive force to opposing offenses from his defensive tackle spot. His 2013 stat line includes 51 tackles and an astounding 26 tackles for loss, eight sacks and four forced fumbles. - Bednarik Award

12/12/2013 - 2013 OUTLAND TROPHY WINNER (TOP INTERIOR LINEMAN): Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh...The 6-foot, 285-pound Donald had an incredibly productive senior season. He leads the nation in tackles for loss (2.2 per game), while ranking 10th in forced fumbles (tied, 0.33 per game) and 13th in sacks (tied, 0.83 per game). Perhaps his most impressive statistic this season: of his 54 total tackles, nearly half have been behind the line of scrimmage (26.5). A graduate of Penn Hills High School, Donald has 28.5 sacks for his collegiate career, the second most among active players and the highest total by an interior lineman. - Pitt football

12/12/2013 - 2013 ROTARY LOMBARDI AWARD WINNER: Pitt senior defensive tackle Aaron Donald added to his list of major awards on Wednesday night as he was named the 2013 Rotary Lombardi Award winner, annually presented to nation's top lineman or linebacker by the Rotary Club of Houston. The announcement was made at the Rotary Lombardi Trophy Banquet on Wednesday in front of a live televised national audience on the CBS Sports Network at the Wortham Center in Houston. Donald was selected for the honor over three other finalists which included UCLA linebacker Anthony Barr, Alabama linebacker C.J. Mosley and Missouri defensive end Michael Sam. The award is voted on by a national selection committee comprised of more than 400 voters.

On Monday, Donald earned his first national honor when he was awarded with the 2013 Bronko Nagurski Trophy, annually presented to the "nation's most outstanding defensive player" by the Charlotte Touchdown Club and Football Writers Association of America (FWAA). The other finalists for the award included Michigan State cornerback Darqueze Dennard, Florida State cornerback Lamarcus Joyner, Mosley and Sam. "This is an incredible honor," said Donald. "The name ???Lombardi' says it all. All of the finalists are such great players. I'm blessed to be chosen for this award." With his Nagurski victory, Donald became the first Pitt defensive player to win a national award since 1980 when the legendary Hugh Green was the recipient of the Lombardi, Maxwell and Walter Camp awards. - Pitt football

12/12/2013 - 2013 CHUCK BEDNARIK AWARD WINNER (DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR): Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh...Pitt senior defensive tackle Aaron Donald became one of the most decorated players in Pitt history on Thursday night as he added to his list of major awards, ending the night with four on the year. Donald was named the 2013 Outland Trophy winner, annually presented by the Greater Omaha Sports Committee and Football Writers Association of America to nation's best offensive or defensive interior lineman and the Chuck Bednarik Award presented by the Maxwell Football Club to the college defensive player of the year. The announcements were made live on ESPN at the Home Depot College Football Awards Show held at the Dance Hall on the Disney Boardwalk in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

Donald earned the Outland Trophy over finalists Jake Matthews, an offensive tackle from Texas A&M and Baylor offensive guard Cyril Richardson. Donald marks the first defensive lineman to win the Outland Trophy since Nebraska defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh in 2009. Donald's second award of the night, the Chuck Bednarik Award, was earned over UCLA linebacker Anthony Barr and Alabama linebacker C.J. Mosley. The only other Pitt player to win the Outland Trophy was Mark May for his performance during the 1980 season. Pitt has never had a player win the Bednarik Award, which was first presented in 1995. - Pitt football

12/12/2013 - 2013 OUTLAND TROPHY FINALIST (TOP INTERIOR LINEMAN): Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh...Donald, a 6-foot, 280-pound senior, leads the country with 26 tackles for loss and is tied for 10th nationally in sacks with 10. He also has four forced fumbles. His tackles for loss total is already ahead of that of former Nebraska star Ndamukong Suh, who won both the Outland and Nagurski trophies in 2009. In the Panthers' 11th game of the season, a 17-16 victory over Syracuse, he blocked an extra point for the victory, making the Panthers bowl-eligible. - Outland Trophy Award

12/11/2013 - 2013 ACC DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR (COACHES): Aaron Donald, DT, Pitt...A hometown product of Pittsburgh, Pa., the 6-foot, 285-pound Donald leads the nation with 26.5 tackles for lost yardage (2.2 per game). The senior has forced four fumbles while registering 10 quarterback sacks. Donald has 54 total tackles in addition to 16 quarterback hurries, two pass break-ups and a blocked extra point that proved the difference in Pitt's one-point ACC win over Syracuse on Nov. 23. His tackles behind the line of scrimmage have resulted in total losses of 130 yards. Donald received five National Defensive Player of the Week awards, and was twice named the ACC Defensive Lineman of the Week. With 28.5 career sacks, he is tied for second among active NCAA FBS players. - ACC football

12/10/2013 - 2013 BRONKO NAGURSKI TROPHY WINNER: Pitt senior defensive tackle Aaron Donald has been named the winner of the 2013 Bronko Nagurski Trophy, annually presented to the "nation's most outstanding defensive player" by the Charlotte Touchdown Club and Football Writers Association of America (FWAA). "This is an incredible honor and I could not be more appreciative," Donald said. "All of the other finalists are unbelievable players and I feel blessed to be here with them this evening. On behalf of my coaches, teammates and family, I want to thank the Charlotte Touchdown Club and Football Writers for selecting me the winner of the Bronko Nagurski Trophy." "Aaron Donald has played at a high level this entire season," said Pitt head coach Paul Chryst, who was in Charlotte for the presentation. "He is a very deserving recipient of this honor and our entire program is extremely proud of him."

Donald is the first Pitt defensive player to win a national award since 1980 when the legendary Hugh Green was the recipient of the Lombardi, Maxwell and Walter Camp awards. The 6-foot, 285-pound Donald had an incredibly productive senior season. He leads the nation in tackles for loss (2.2 per game), while ranking 10th in forced fumbles (tied, 0.33 per game) and 13th in sacks (tied, 0.83 per game). Perhaps his most impressive statistic this season: of his 54 total tackles, nearly half have been behind the line of scrimmage (26.5). A graduate of Penn Hills High School, Donald has 28.5 sacks for his collegiate career, the second most among active players and the highest total by an interior lineman. - Pitt football

12/04/2013 - 2013 ACC FOOTBALL DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR (MEDIA): Pitt defensive tackle Aaron Donald also earned national attention with his defensive play throughout the Panthers' inaugural ACC season and has been named a finalist for the Outland Trophy, the Bronko Nagurski Trophy, the Chuck Bednarik Award and the Rotary Lombardi Award. A hometown product of Pittsburgh, Pa., the 6-foot, 285-pound Donald leads the nation with 26.5 tackles for lost yardage (2.2 per game).

The senior has forced four fumbles while registering 10 quarterback sacks. Donald has 54 total tackles in addition to 16 quarterback hurries, two pass break-ups and a blocked extra point that proved the difference in Pitt's one-point ACC win over Syracuse on Nov. 23. His tackles behind the line of scrimmage have resulted in total losses of 130 yards. Donald earned first-team All-ACC honors from ACSMA earlier this week, received five National Defensive Player of the Week awards, and was twice named the ACC Defensive Lineman of the Week. With 28.5 career sacks, he is tied for second among active NCAA FBS players. - ACC football

12/04/2013 - 2013 ALL-ACC FIRST TEAM (MEDIA): DT Aaron Donald, Pitt, 6-0, 275, Sr., Pittsburgh, Pa. (171)...Donald, a finalist for the Chuck Bednarik Award, the Bronko Nagurski Trophy, the Outland Trophy and the Rotary Lombardi Award, was named to the first team following an outstanding season. Donald, who was named the ACC Defensive Lineman of the Week twice, concluded the regular season with a nation-best 2.2 tackles for loss per game and is second in active career total sacks with 28.5. - Pitt football

11/29/2013 - The numbers and the face of the man behind them seem out of whack. Aaron Donald doesn't look like the most disruptive defensive player in the country, one whose relentlessness is creating a minor groundswell of Heisman Trophy support. Generously listed at 6-feet and probably more than a few cheeseburgers short of his published weight of 285 pounds, the Pittsburgh senior speaks in a soft, thoughtful voice that doesn't exactly scream hulking menace. To be fair, that's the way Donald appears off the field. On it, he says, he becomes "a different person."

One who might be having the most dominant season of any player at any position in the country. Heading into the final home game of his collegiate career on Friday against Miami, Donald leads the nation in tackles for loss (26), is 10th in sacks (10) and 11th in forced fumbles (four). He even threw in a blocked extra point that ended up being the difference in a 17-16 victory over Syracuse last weekend that assured Pitt (6-5, 3-4 ACC) of a sixth straight bowl berth.

When asked how a short guy manages to get his hand on an extra point, the typically serious Donald breaks character and says with a smile, "I'm 6-4!" Only, it seems, when he's in his cleats. "He's not the biggest guy," Pitt senior offensive lineman Ryan Schlieper said. "That's why he's not getting all the hype. But he plays like the biggest guy out there, that's all that matters." - AP Sports

11/29/2013 - WEEK 13 ACC DEFENSIVE LINEMAN OF THE WEEK: Aaron Donald, Pitt, Sr., DT, 6-0, 285, Pittsburgh, Pa.,...Donald made the decisive play in Pitt's 17-16 win at Syracuse on Saturday by blocking an extra point. The Bronko Nagurski Trophy totaled nine tackles (eight solo), 3.5 tackles for loss (minus 17 yards) and two quarterback hurries. More than half of Donald's total tackles this season (51) have come behind the line of scrimmage (26.0). - ACC football

11/29/2013 - WEEK 13 CBSSPORTS.COM NATIONAL CO-DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Pittsburgh defensive tackle Aaron Donald...Aaron Donald's dominance on the defensive line has not slowed through the 2013 season, and while his totals have made him a popular pick for All-American teams and other individual awards it was his play in a game Pitt needed badly that earns him a spot on the Player of the Week board. Donald recorded eight solo tackles, 3.5 tackles for a loss and two quarterback hurries in Pitt's 17-16 win to become bowl eligible. The Panthers' star defensive lineman also blocked an extra point in the first quarter that went on to be the deciding point in the victory. - CBSSports.com

11/27/2013 - 2014 NFL Draft: Pitt's Aaron Donald is college's most explosive DT...Football has always been a big man's game. The success of "undersized" players at the skill position positions, however, and the need to disrupt quarterbacks immediately is forcing scouts to re-evaluate pass-rushers. Quickness, rather than size, is becoming a critical trait among front seven defenders, especially against spread offenses in which quarterbacks are being taught to get rid of the ball in three seconds or less.

Pittsburgh senior defensive tackle Aaron Donald could lead a squadron of gifted but size-deficient defensive tackles in the 2014 draft ready to wage war on NFL quarterbacks. As a finalist for the Bronko Nagurski Award (nation's top defender) and a semifinalist for the Bednarik Award (nation's top defender), Outland Trophy (top interior lineman), Rotary Lombardi Award (top lineman or linebacker) and Lott IMPACT Trophy (nation's top defender), Donald is far from an unknown. Leading the nation with an average of 2.3 tackles for loss per game will do that for a guy.

Despite his gaudy production, fellow undersized defensive tackles Will Sutton (Arizona State) and even injured Florida standout Dominique Easley have generated as much or more NFL draft buzz than Donald simply because the Panthers' star measures in at 6-0, 285 pounds. - Rob Rang, NFLDraftScout.com

11/27/2013 - 2014 NFL Draft: Pitt's Aaron Donald is college's most explosive DT...Blocking a kick is always impressive. Blocking a PAT is exceedingly rare because the kick is so short, giving defenders very little time to get there. Very few defenders possess Donald's quickness, however. Donald's ability to make impact plays in virtually every situation could result in a very high selection in the draft, though cracking the first round could prove difficult. For all of the big plays Donald makes at the collegiate level, there will be plenty of scouts who simply refuse to consider a defensive tackle of his size in the first round.

As such, don't be surprised if Donald "slips" into the draft's second day. It will be even less surprising, however, when he out-plays this selection, swimming through NFL offensive linemen to wreak havoc in the opponents' backfield. - Rob Rang, NFLDraftScout.com

11/27/2013 - 2014 NFL Draft: Pitt's Aaron Donald is college's most explosive DT...As Donald demonstrated against the Syracuse Orangemen Saturday, however, burst can be just as dominating as brawn. Alternating between the two defensive tackle positions in Pittsburgh's traditional 4-3 scheme with 6-foot-2, 285-pound sophomore Darryl Render, Donald routinely split gaps in Syracuse's offensive line, ruining plays before they had any chance at success and helping the Panthers earn their sixth victory of the 2013 season. Donald is as explosive out of his stance as any defensive tackle in the country. This burst is complemented by a terrific over-arm swim move that allows him to slip past would-be blockers in an instant.

While shorter and lighter than scouts would prefer, Donald appears to have longer arms than typical for a man of his size. These long arms give him room to maneuver as he swims through the offensive line. It also helps him lock-out when offensive linemen attempt to drive him off the line of scrimmage in the running game, making Donald a surprisingly effective run-stuffing presence, as well as a pass rush specialist. Donald's ability to penetrate the middle even helped him block a PAT in this contest, a critical miss considering that the Panthers won 17-16. - Rob Rang, NFLDraftScout.com

11/24/2013 - WEEK 13 WALTER CAMP NATIONAL DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: AARON DONALD, PITTSBURGH, Senior, Defensive Tackle, Pittsburgh, PA/Penn Hills...Defensive tackle Aaron Donald posted nine tackles (8 solo), 3.5 for losses, two quarterback hurries and blocked a point-after-kick as Pittsburgh held off Syracuse, 17-16. With the victory, the Panthers improved to 6-5, 3-4 in the Atlantic Coast Conference. Donald is the fifth Pittsburgh player to earn Walter Camp Player of the Week honors, and the second this season (QB Tom Savage, Sept. 22). - The Walter Camp Football Foundation

11/21/2013 - Six semifinalists named for Outland Trophy...Pitt senior defensive tackle Aaron Donald, Alabama junior left tackle Cyrus Kouandjio, Texas A&M senior left tackle Jake Matthews, Baylor senior guard Cyril Richardson, Florida State senior center Bryan Stork and and Stanford senior guard David Yankey were named semifinalists on Wednesday for the Outland Trophy. The award, presented annually by the Football Writers Association of America since 1946, goes to the outstanding interior lineman in college football. Three finalists will be announced on Nov. 25 and the winner will be named on Dec. 12.

Donald is the only defensive player on the list. He leads the Football Bowl Subdivision in tackles for a loss this season with 2.3 per game, is tied for sixth in sacks and has four forced fumbles. Kouandjio anchors the offensive line for unbeaten Alabama. A Crimson Tide lineman has won the award or been a finalist the past two years. The Outland Trophy is the third-oldest award in college football behind the Heisman Trophy and the Maxwell Award. - The Sports Xchange

11/21/2013 - Award season is coming. It is hard to pick offensive linemen, but not so hard to pick the D-linemen. One interior lineman is an easy call. Pitt DT Aaron Donald has to make All-American. On Saturday against North Carolina, the senior had another dominating performance: three more TFLs to go with one forced fumble, one pass breakup and five quarterback hurries.

Donald leads nation in TFLs (2.3 per game) and is sixth in sacks. He's also the only DT among the nation's Top 10 sackers. "That guy's a heck of a football player," UNC coach Larry Fedora said. "He is definitely an All-American. ... He plays so hard and it makes it really tough on you. We were very, very aware of where he was in every situation. The guy's got a bright future ahead of him." - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com

11/11/2013 - TOP 10 BEST DEFENSIVE PLAYERS OF 2013: 8. Aaron Donald, Pitt, DT: No defender has produced a bigger season with less fanfare than the Panther D-lineman. Donald leads the nation in TFLs with 19.5. He also has three forced fumbles and nine sacks. - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com

11/04/2013 - WEEK 10 ACC DEFENSIVE LINEMAN OF THE WEEK: Aaron Donald, Sr., Pitt, DT, 6-0, 275, Pittsburgh, Pa.,...Donald recorded 11 tackles (all solo), including six tackles for loss in Saturday night's 21-10 ACC road loss at Georgia Tech. Donald's big night included a quarterback sack and two forced fumbles, and his six tackles for lost yardage are the most recorded by an FBS defender this season. Donald currently ranks first nationally in tackles for loss per game (2.4), quarterback sacks per game (1.1), and 12th in forced fumbles per game (0.38). He also leads all active players nationally in career quarterback sacks with 27.5. - ACC football

11/04/2013 - WEEK 10 COLLEGE FOOTBALL PERFORMANCE AWARDS NATIONAL FBS Defensive Performer of the Week: Aaron Donald (Pittsburgh)...Donald was simply dominant against the Yellow Jackets, compiling 11 tackles (all solo), six tackles for loss, two forced fumbles and a sack. The six TFLs are the most by a Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) player this season. Perhaps the most incredible stat of the night: Georgia Tech ran 63 offensive plays, nearly 10% of which ended in a TFL by Donald.

Donald is making a strong case for being the country's most disruptive defensive lineman. He leads the nation in tackles for loss (2.4 per game), ranks third in sacks (1.1 per game) and is 12th in forced fumbles (0.38 per game). Through eight games he has totaled 36 tackles, 19.5 tackles for loss, nine quarterback sacks, eight QB hurries and three forced fumbles. - College Football Performance Awards/Pitt football

11/04/2013 - He doesn't get the hype of Jadeveon Clowney or even Michael Sam or Stephon Tuitt, but no D-lineman is making more plays than Pitt's Aaron Donald and he deserves some national pub. In a loss to Ga. Tech in Atlanta, the senior defensive tackle had a jaw-dropping six TFLs to go with two forced fumbles. Donald leads the nation in TFLs with 19.5 (2.4 per game). - Bruce Feldman, CBSSports.com

09/16/2013 - SEPT 16 COLLEGE FOOTBALL PERFORMANCE AWARDS DEFENSIVE LINEMAN PERFORMER OF THE WEEK: Aaron Donald (Pittsburgh)...Senior defensive tackle Aaron Donald tied a career high with four tackles for loss vs. New Mexico. He also recorded two sacks, bringing his career total to 21.5.

Honorable Mention: Amos Draper (Arkansas State), Julius Warmsley (Tulane), Lorenzo Mauldin (Louisville), Mike Ugenyi (Army), Chris Smith (Arkansas), Josh Shirley (Washington), Perez Ford (Northern Illinois), Beau Allen (Wisconsin), C.J. Johnson (Ole Miss). - Pittsburgh football/College Football Performance Awards

09/11/2013 - Scouting the Pittsburgh run defense: After Florida State's top two running backs averaged 5.8 yards per carry, the front seven will have its hands full in slowing Kasey Carrier, who piled up 291 yards on 41 carries in an overtime victory against UTEP last week. Carrier leads the nation in rushing, but the Lobos' offense offers little else. Containing Carrier would seem to be the key to getting the defense off the field, something that did not happen frequently enough in the opener. DT Aaron Donald and the other big men up front will want to make the 5-9, 185-pound Carrier feel their presence early and often in order to make him less a threat in the option/pistol offense. - The Sports Xchange

09/02/2013 - PLAYERS TO WATCH: Senior defensive tackle Aaron Donald is poised to crack the top 10 on Pitt's career quarterback sacks list. Through his first three seasons, Donald has 18.5 sacks. Only three interior defensive linemen (tackles and nose tackles) have reached the top 10 on this list. Donald would be just fourth in Pitt history to achieve the feat. - Pitt football

08/11/2013 - TOP PITTSBURGH PROSPECTS FOR THE 2014 NFL DRAFT: 1. DT Aaron Donald (6-0, 275, 4.95)...A quick-footed interior penetrator, Donald became a full-time starter as a sophomore in 2011 and recorded double-digit sacks (11). And although his sack total dipped to just 5.5 as a junior last season, he boosted his tackles for loss production from 16 (2011) to 18.5 (2012), earning First Team All-Conference honors as a junior.

At a hair under six-foot with a 275-pound frame, Donald has an odd body type, which presents questions about his fit at the next level. But he is able to use his length and core strength to stack-and-shed and frequently find his way to the backfield. Donald is a favorite of the coaching staff due to his football smarts and relentless motor any time he steps onto the field, flashing an obvious passion for the game. There are some concerns about the position and scheme he fits best in the NFL, but coaches at the next level are going to struggle to hide their grins at the thought of working with a player with Donald's pedigree. - Dane Brugler, NFLDraftScout.com

08/11/2013 - PLAYERS TO WATCH IN 2013: DL Aaron Donald - The junior missed one game with a knee injury, but did not miss a beat when he was on the field. Donald led the Big East with 18.5 tackles for loss and recorded 5.5 sacks. His effort resulted in being named All-Big East First Team. He will need to have another bog year because the line is otherwise pretty thin. - The Sports Xchange

07/17/2013 - 2013 OUTLAND TROPHY WATCH LIST: Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh, DT...The 6-foot, 285-pound Donald (Pittsburgh, Pa./Penn Hills) enters his senior season already owning impressive career credentials. He was named All-Big East each of the past two years, collecting 16.5 sacks and 34.5 TFLs during that span. In 2012, Donald compiled 64 total tackles, 18.5 tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks and a forced fumble. He led the Big East and ranked 12th nationally with 1.54 TFLs per game. - Pitt football

07/17/2013 - 2013 BEDNARIK AWARD WATCH LIST: DT Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh...The 6-foot, 285-pound Donald (Pittsburgh, Pa./Penn Hills) enters his senior season already owning impressive career credentials. He was named All-Big East each of the past two years, collecting 16.5 sacks and 34.5 TFLs during that span. In 2012, Donald compiled 64 total tackles, 18.5 tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks and a forced fumble. He led the Big East and ranked 12th nationally with 1.54 TFLs per game. - Pitt football

07/17/2013 - 2013 BRONKO NAGURSKI TROPHY WATCH LIST: Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh, DL...Donald (Pittsburgh, Pa./Penn Hills) enters his senior season already owning impressive career credentials. He was named All-Big East each of the past two years, collecting 16.5 sacks and 34.5 TFLs during that span. In 2012, Donald compiled 64 total tackles, 18.5 tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks and a forced fumble. He led the Big East and ranked 12th nationally with 1.54 TFLs per game. - Pitt football

07/17/2013 - 2013 LOMBARDI AWARD WATCH LIST: DE Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh...Donald (Pittsburgh, Pa./Penn Hills) enters his senior season already owning impressive career credentials. He was named All-Big East each of the past two years, collecting 16.5 sacks and 34.5 TFLs during that span. In 2012, Donald compiled 64 total tackles, 18.5 tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks and a forced fumble. He led the Big East and ranked 12th nationally with 1.54 TFLs per game. - Pitt football

05/17/2013 - 2013 LOTT IMPACT TROPHY WATCH LIST: Aaron Donald, DL, Pitt...Last season, Donald (Pittsburgh, Pa./Penn Hills) was a first-team All-Big East selection, compiling 64 total tackles, 18.5 tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks and a forced fumble. He led the Big East and ranked 12th nationally with 1.54 TFLs per game.

Donald spearheaded a Pitt defense that ranked 17th nationally in fewest yards allowed (330.54 yards/game). The Panthers' also owned lofty NCAA rankings in pass defense (20th, 194.15 yards/game), pass efficiency defense (21st, 113.12 rating) and interceptions (26th, 15 total).

Donald is one of 15 returning starters for Pitt this season, the Panthers' first as a member of the Atlantic Coast Conference. Pitt will open the year with a highly anticipated showdown against defending ACC and Orange Bowl champ Florida State on Labor Day (Sept. 2) at Heinz Field. - Pitt football

 
Player News
05/12/2014 - Snead said the Rams were so glad to get Donald that they never considered trading down. "We're jacked with the pick," he said. "He's very productive and way ahead at this point in hand use. He's an impressive young man." Although Donald is 6-foot-1, 285 pounds, Snead said he won't be asked to get bigger. "His game isn't size," Snead said. "He's short, but that helps him get leverage. Getting bigger wouldn't help him. His game is not size. His game is to penetrate." And that he did, totaling 66 tackles for loss in four seasons at Pittsburgh, including 28.5 in 2013. For his part, Donald said he's "excited" to be with the Rams. "They have the best defensive line in the NFL and I'm pumped up to be a part of it," he said. "I can't wait to get with the coaches and get to work." - The Sports Xchange
 

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