FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. -- Knile Davis never quite looked like his old self this season at Arkansas.
The running back's next chance to show he is fully recovered from a devastating ankle injury will come in the NFL.
Davis announced his intent to apply for entry into the NFL draft, foregoing his senior year with the Razorbacks on Tuesday, bringing a close to a career that was equal parts productive and injury-marred.
He led all Southeastern Conference running backs in rushing in 2010 with 1,322 yards. He averaged 147 yards rushing over his final seven games that season, capping off the breakout performance with a 139-yard rushing effort in the Sugar Bowl against Ohio State.
However, he missed the 2011 season while recovering from a broken left ankle. Davis returned this past season and said he was 100 percent healthy, though he gained only 377 yards rushing - averaging 3.7 yards per carry.
"Over the last few weeks, I've been very reflective in weighing my options," Davis said in a statement. "However, after careful counsel with my family and support system, I've made the decision to forego my final year of eligibility and enter the 2013 NFL draft. I sincerely look forward to working towards realizing my ultimate goal of becoming an NFL running back of the highest caliber."
Davis has also broken his right ankle twice and his collarbone twice in his career, dating to high school in Texas. None of the previous injuries, however, hurt as badly or required as difficult a rehab as the broken left ankle he suffered during a preseason scrimmage before the 2011 season.
Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press