Linebacker Su'a Cravens, USC's top defensive player, will apply for early eligibility into the 2016 NFL Draft.
The junior announced the decision via social media:
Underclassmen have until a Jan. 18 deadline to apply for early draft eligibility.
Cravens wasn't a typical linebacker for the Trojans, playing something of a hybrid role that made his safety-like coverage skills a big asset on third downs. He made 78 tackles, tied for the team lead, including 14.5 tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks and three interceptions.
NFL Media analyst Lance Zierlein named Cravens one of college football's top 10 linebackers before the season began, and Cravens' junior campaign did nothing to dispel the ranking.
A key determination scouts will need to make about Cravens is whether he will have a better pro career by adding size and playing in more of a traditional linebacker role, or if his hybrid skill as a safety should be further developed.