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Sooners’ McCoy makes it official: He’s going pro

The top five of the NFL draft just officially got a whole helluva lot more interesting this afternoon. And, at the same time, Oklahoma’s defensive line suffered a serious, but expected, blow.

In a statement released through the school, Sooner defensive tackle Gerald McCoy announced that he was foregoing his final season in Norman and will jump headfirst into the 2010 draft pool.

The move is not unexpected as it’s been reported that the two-time All-American was heavily leaning toward leaving early. In fact, in his statement, McCoy confirmed he made the decision in his own mind a couple of months ago.

“I made the decision around mid-season when I knew that I would have enough credits to graduate,” McCoy said in a statement. “Graduation was my main goal and once I knew I had that accomplished, I wanted to look at playing in the NFL.

“I loved my experience at OU and I’m going to miss it. I accomplished almost everything I wanted to get done here and it has been very positive with my teammates, the coaches, the fans, everyone.”

According to Tulsa World, McCoy will participate in graduation ceremonies Friday night and complete his degree in human relations through online courses in the spring.

Even as his best defensive player was walking out the door, head coach Bob Stoops lavished praise on both McCoy, the player, and McCoy, the person.

“Gerald is a great example of how to be a student-athlete. He came here, took care of his academic responsibilities, invested himself in the lives of others and had a great career on the field. I’ve never been associated with a young man who was any more impressive than Gerald.”