|AP Photo/Aaron M. Sprecher|
|Texas A&M's Cedric Ogbuehi will return next season as one of the top tackle prospects in college football.|
College football underclassmen who stay in school despite being projected as a first-round draft pick are rare, and becoming ever-rarer. In fact, Texas A&M offensive lineman Cedric Ogbuehi might be a minority of one in that regard this year, but the Aggies' right tackle tweeted Thursday that his mind is made up to stay:
I am excited to return to College Station to continue my education and play another season with your coaches and teammates.â Cedric Ogbuehi (@Nuff_ced70) January 9, 2014
The NFL has always been a dream of mine but I want to achieve that dream with my education and as much preparation as possible at mypositionâ Cedric Ogbuehi (@Nuff_ced70) January 9, 2014
Ogbuehi said after the Aggies' 52-48 win over Duke in the Chick-fil-A Bowl that he received first-round feedback from the NFL Draft Advisory Board. With millions of dollars at stake, it's uncommon for a prospect to pass on a first-round grade, but Ogbuehi has said in the past that he'd like the chance to prove himself at left tackle, which could make him even more attractive to scouts for the position's demands as the blindside pass protector of right-handed quarterbacks.
It's all but a certainty that Ogbuehi will move from right tackle to the left side at Texas A&M next year, replacing another first-round projection in outgoing senior Jake Matthews, and being the primary protector of whomever coach Kevin Sumlin chooses to replace Johnny Manziel as quarterback.
With SEC left tackles Greg Robinson of Auburn, Tennessee's Antonio Richardson and Alabama's Cyrus Kouandjio all moving to the NFL as underclassmen, Ogbuehi immediately becomes the SEC's top left tackle prospect for the 2015 draft, followed by South Carolina's Corey Robinson, and perhaps LSU's La'El Collins, who remains undecided about entering this year's draft.
Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.