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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Reports: Gronkowski going pro

Michael Ignatov / Arizona Daily Wildcat

Football vs Washington Huskies. NCAA college football game at Arizona Stadium in Tucson, Ariz., Saturday, Oct. 4, 2008. Arizona won 48-14.
Michael Ignatov
Michael Ignatov / Arizona Daily Wildcat Football vs Washington Huskies. NCAA college football game at Arizona Stadium in Tucson, Ariz., Saturday, Oct. 4, 2008. Arizona won 48-14.

Rob Gronkowski, the most prolific tight end in Arizona history, will officially declare for the NFL Draft today, according to multiple reports.

GOAZCATS.com and ESPN’s Joe Schad have reported that Gronkowski will go pro.

The tight end will speak at a press conference in McKale Center at 11 a.m. today—the last day for draft-eligible underclassmen to declare for the draft.

The junior sent a text message to the Arizona Daily Star saying “”no comments,”” though he responded differently to other media outlets.

Gronkowski returned an Arizona Daily Wildcat phone call with a text message Thursday night that said “”I will cya tomorrow at the (press conference).”” The Daily Wildcat, under the assumption that the reports of Gronkowski going pro were true, responded with a text congratulating the tight end on his decision, to which Gronkowski responded, “”Thanks.””

The Daily Wildcat then responded with a request for further confirmation, only to receive a response from Gronkowski that said, “”To be fair to all reporters I’m just gonna wait til (Friday).””

Gronkowski entered Arizona as one of the most highly recruited Wildcats of the decade, and he did not disappoint. In just 22 games Gronkowski hauled in 75 catches, 1,197 yards and 16 touchdowns — all school records for a tight end.

He missed his junior season because of a herniated disc in his back, which put his future in question. It was assumed that, if healthy, Gronkowski would enter the NFL Draft a year early, but, after being sidelined for the year, Gronkowski said that he would need to weigh all of his options before making a decision.

“”I’m going to definitely look into it and look into the NFL,”” Gronkowski said in a press conference in October. “”You have to always look at that option — I mean, it’s there, you have to look at it, it’s a big career opportunity. But if I don’t like what I get back and all of that, I’m definitely going to come back (to Arizona). But if (the NFL) is looking solid like I would hope it to, you definitely have to look at that and weigh your options.””

Gronkowski will likely shed light on the information he received from scouts over the last few months during his Friday press conference, but initial reports from 18 scouts that were polled were positive, Rob’s father Gordon Gronkowski told the Daily Star.

“”Nine of them said that if Rob blows up at the combine, he’ll go first round,”” the elder Gronkowski said. “”The other nine said, ‘If he just does good there, we’ll take him in the second round.’

“”I talked to one of the team’s doctors — someone I know from a team that needs a tight end. He said, ‘Gordie, I’m giving your kid flying colors.’ “”

During his press conference in October, Gronkowski said that he would only decide to go to the NFL early if he was told he would be picked in the first or second round.

The No. 2 overall tight end — according to ESPN Scouts Inc. — Todd McShay, was cleared by Los Angeles doctors on Thursday afternoon, according to GOAZCATS.com, giving Gronkowski enough time to train for the NFL Combine in February.

The Draft is April 22-24.

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