Tech's Thomas Leaving Early for NFL
Junior wide receiver skipping senior season to pursue NFL career
Jan. 8, 2010
ATLANTA - Georgia Tech junior Demaryius "Bay-Bay" Thomas, who in 2009 enjoyed one of the best seasons ever by a Yellow Jacket wide receiver, will forego his senior season and enter his name in the NFL draft.
College juniors have until Jan. 15 to surrender their final year of eligibility by declaring for the draft.
Thomas was a first-team All-ACC selection, a third-team Associated Press All-American and a semifinalist for the Biletnikoff Award in 2009.
"This was a difficult decision for me because I love Georgia Tech and Atlanta," Thomas said. "But, after talking it over with my family, we felt like it was time to move on to the next level.
"I want to thank Coach (Paul) Johnson and all the (assistant) coaches for all that they have done for me. He has been straight-up with me from the beginning and I will always appreciate that."
On an offense known more for its rushing attack, Thomas emerged as one of the nation's top receivers this season:
-- Thomas had 46 of Georgia Tech's 78 receptions.
-- His 1,154 receiving yards this season were the second-most in Georgia Tech history, trailing only Calvin Johnson (1,202 yards in 2006).
-- Thomas had eight of Tech's 11 touchdown receptions.
-- He averaged a remarkable 25.1 yards per reception.
-- Thomas produced four games of 100-plus yards receiving in '09.
-- He had 18 receptions of 20 yards or longer, nine receptions of 50 yards or longer and four catches of 70-plus yards this season.
Thomas expects to join a long line of former Yellow Jacket receivers who were selected in the NFL draft: Johnson was the second overall pick by Detroit in 2007; Jonathan Smith was drafted in the seventh round in 2004 by Buffalo; Dez White was a 2000 third-round selection by Chicago; Charlie Rogers went in the fifth round to Seattle in 1999.
"I wish Bay-Bay and his family the best," Johnson said. "I appreciate everything he has done for us. A lot of people told him two years ago that he should leave. He gave it a chance and I think things worked out well for him."
Thomas concludes his career with 120 receptions (7th-most in Tech history) for 2,339 yards (4th-most in Tech history) and 15 receiving touchdowns (4th-most in Tech history). He caught a pass in 29 consecutive games before seeing that streak end Tuesday night in the FedEx Orange Bowl.
THOMAS' CAREER STATISTICS Year GP-GS Rec Yds Avg TD LP Rush Yds Avg TD LP 2009 14-14 46 1,154 25.1 8 76 1 3 3.0 0 3 2008 12-12 39 627 16.1 3 88 2 29 14.5 0 15 2007 13-5 35 558 15.9 4 56 1 0 0.0 0 0 TOTAL 39-31 120 2,339 19.5 15 88 4 32 8.0 0 15
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