UCLA has already lost one underclassman in star linebacker Myles Jack, who withdrew from school to rehabilitate a knee injury and ready himself as much as possible for the NFL Scouting Combine in February.
And he might not be the only Bruins junior to make an early exit.
Defensive tackle Kenny Clark is strongly considering applying for early eligibility into the 2016 NFL Draft, according to NFL Media's Rand Getlin. Clark has been a dominant presence in the interior of the Bruins' defensive front this season. He occupies double teams, and yet he's still tied for second on the team in tackles with 64, along with nine tackles for loss and five sacks.
Oklahoma State defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah is leaning toward applying for early draft entry as well, and he and his family have met with potential agents, according to Getlin. Ogbah has recorded team highs in sacks (13) and tackles for loss (17.5) this season for the Cowboys. The junior (6-foot-4, 275 pounds) has 28 sacks for his career and has been more productive this season than other top pass rushers in the Big 12, including Baylor's Shawn Oakman and Oklahoma's Eric Striker.
Clark (6-3, 310 pounds) was a bright spot this season on a Bruins defense that lost Jack, defensive lineman Eddie Vanderdoes and defensive back Fabian Moreau to injury. NFL Media analyst Lance Zierlein ranked Clark the No. 9 interior defensive lineman in college football before the season began. However, NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah was not impressed with Clark's showing last week in a loss to USC.
While Clark is considering an early departure, another top prospect is mulling a return to school. LSU's Tre'Davious White, one of the most talented cornerbacks in the game, is giving thought to playing his senior season with the Tigers, according to Getlin. White has six pass breakups this season for LSU.
Underclassmen have until a Jan. 18 deadline to apply for early draft eligibility. Several underclassmen so far have indicated an intention to apply for early entry into the 2016 draft.