Georgia’s Stafford and Moreno to Leave for the NFL

By Posted on: January 7th, 2009 in Football Comments Off
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Come on. Give us one more shot at you. You can wear those black jerseys again…

 

It was announced this afternoon in Atlanta that both Matthew Stafford and Knowshon Moreno will not return for their senior and junior years, respectively, to test the waters of the NFL draft. While most Bulldog fans were expecting at least one of them to go, having both declare is quite a blow for the pound pups. To put this decision in Auburn terms, it’s akin to both Jason Campbell and Cadillac Williams declaring for the draft one year early after our failed 2003 MNC run.

Stafford apparently applied to the NFL for an evaluation of where he might come up in the draft–which you can do with no penalty from the NCAA–and liked what he got back–a probable first rounder. Moreno made no such request, but seemingly is willing to roll the dice anyway. Also evident is that Stafford is content to always play second fiddle behind QB David Greene in Georgia football annals, but maybe he needs the money…

I’m torn with what situations like this mean for my favorite sport. Although I generally don’t give a damn about the NFL, I can be a bandwagon fan of any team with former Auburn players. I’m also a realist, and it’s hard to ignore the lucrative contracts that await talented players. And who can blame them for wanting to move up the timetable on their life-long dream? Should the NCAA step in to stop this runaway train, or would that be limiting competition?

Football is a team sport, but college football is a family. You may go and be a hired gun for some franchise, but your family is always going to remember you for who you were. Although CFB is a de facto farm system for the NFL, it would pain me greatly to see it end up like the NBA, seemingly where players just check in and then hit the road. Maybe that’s what’s in store for us with all this hyper recruiting. You land a 5 star guy, he’s gone in 2 years. I say no thanks. I’ll stick with the guys that want to pay their dues for a while over the ones just passing through…

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