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Originally published Wednesday, January 1, 2014 at 8:15 PM

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South Carolina star DE Jadeveon Clowney off to NFL draft

South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney said he will enter the NFL draft.


The Associated Press

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ORLANDO, Fla. — South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney said he will enter the NFL draft.

Likely the top overall talent in the draft class, Clowney finished his college career Wednesday in the Gamecocks’ 34-24 victory over Wisconsin in the Capital One Bowl.

“Before we even put the pads on, I thought we’ve only got 60 minutes and it’s over with,” he said. “I’m going to be sad about it. ... I’m excited to move forward with my life, though.”

The junior had five tackles against the Badgers.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville quarterback Teddy Bridgewater announced that he will forgo his senior season with the No. 18 Cardinals and enter the NFL draft.

Projected as a first-round selection and possibly the first quarterback taken this spring, Bridgewater passed for 3,970 yards and a school-record 31 touchdowns this season, including a career-best 447 yards with three TDs in Saturday’s 36-9 rout of Miami in the Russell Athletic Bowl.

Bridgewater said in a release the decision “was extremely difficult.” He said attending Louisville “was one of the best decisions I could have ever made.”

The Cardinals won 27 games with Bridgewater starting, including 12 this season to tie a school record. The highlight was last year’s 33-23 Sugar Bowl upset of Florida in which the Miami native earned MVP honors.

DALLAS — Derek Thompson threw for 256 yards and two touchdowns, Brelan Chancellor scored twice, and North Texas dominated the second half to beat UNLV 36-14 in the Heart of Dallas Bowl.

Both of Chancellor’s touchdown runs came in the fourth quarter after he keyed the go-ahead scoring drive in the third with some nifty footwork on a first-down catch. He had 121 yards rushing and receiving.

North Texas (9-4) pulled away from a 7-7 halftime tie for its first bowl win since New Orleans in 2002. The school’s third postseason victory came in front of a strong turnout of 38,380 on a sunny day at the Cotton Bowl, just 45 miles from the Denton campus.

“It was so exciting running on the field and seeing a sea of green,” said Thompson, who was 21 of 30 without an interception and was voted the game’s MVP. “We love our fans.”

UNLV (7-6) drove 95 yards for a touchdown on its opening possession but didn’t score again until the Mean Green was up 28-7 in the fourth quarter.

The Rebels lost in the postseason for the first time in the school’s fourth bowl game.

Note

• Ohio State sophomore defensive end Noah Spence was suspended for three games for violating an undisclosed Big Ten rule, the Buckeyes announced. Spence did not accompany Ohio State on its trip to the Orange Bowl. He also will sit out the first two games of the 2014 season.



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