Although not an underclassman and therefore not part of our Draft Declarations Tracker, Washington State quarterback Jeff Tuel was initially looking to return to Wazzu for a fifth year. Therefore, news of his departure to the NFL is at least a little bit surprising.
Tuel confirmed his intentions to the Seattle Times with Washington State also confirming a short time later.
“I feel good about my chances,” Tuel told the paper. “I’m a confident individual. Whether I’m drafted or a free agent, I’ll train hard and play hard.”
Washington State was seeking a fifth year of eligibility for Tuel, who missed practically the entire 2011 season with injuries. Interestingly enough, Tuel said that he was questioned by the NCAA about possible mistreatment by the previous coaching staff. In other words, there was interest by the NCAA into whether Tuel was brought back from his first collarbone injury too soon. Since Tuel was seeking an appeal, it sounds as though a decision was going to hinge on those answers.
So, Tuel has decided to try his luck at the next level.
“I don’t feel comfortable saying I was mistreated. I was never mistreated by them,” Tuel said. “It’s a combination of… how long this has been drug out. If it goes two, three more weeks and they say no, I’m kind of screwed.”
It’s an interesting move, but it sounds as though Tuel was stuck with a lot of uncertainty. The senior had a so-so year with as many touchdowns as interceptions (eight) and just over 2,000 yards passing.