A lost season for Scooby Wright will, as most had expected, be his last one.
Following Arizona’s win over New Mexico Saturday in the New Mexico Bowl, Wright announced that he has decided to take his leave of the collegiate game and ply his football wares at the professional level. Wright, a former two-star recruit, had one season of eligibility remaining, but opted to make himself available for the April NFL draft next year.
Subsequent to that emotional on-field announcement, Wright released a statement through the university’s sports information department:
I want to announce I have decided to enter the 2016 NFL Draft. I couldn’t have asked to be around a better group of people than I have been with over the last three years here at Arizona.
“Coming out of high school, I only had one scholarship offer and that was Arizona; they took a chance on me and for that I am thankful to Coach Rodriguez. I am forever grateful for all my coaches, from the strength coaches to defensive coordinator Jeff Casteel for making me the player I am today. I also want to thank the Wildcat Nation for their support and encouragement the last three years.
“This past season, I have faced a lot of adversity, but at the end of the day it has made me a better man and human being. I am truly blessed and humbled to be in the position I am today to have the opportunity to go chase my dream that I have had since I first started playing this great game.
“Once again, thank you to everybody who has supported and helped me get to where I am today.
Wright played in just three games this season, the last coming Sept. 26 prior to today’s bowl game. He sustained a foot injury late that month and hadn’t been healthy enough to return despite being reportedly close a couple of times.
Last season, though, Wright took the college football world by storm as the linebacker was a unanimous All-American and won the Bronko Nagurski Trophy, the Rotary Lombardi Award and the Chuck Bednarik Award, all given annually to the nation’s top defender. His slotting in the draft will be one of the fascinating storylines throughout the next few months.