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Oregon's De'Anthony Thomas declares for NFL draft

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Versatile Oregon running back De'Anthony Thomas has decided to skip his senior season and make himself available for the NFL draft.

Thomas announced the decision Sunday via GoDucks.com, the school's athletic website.

Known for his speed, Thomas finishes his college career with 5,345 all-purpose yards, trailing only LaMichael James and Kenjon Barner on Oregon's all-time list. Thomas holds Ducks records for kickoff return yards with 1,885 and a 17.1-yard punt return average.

The 5-foot-9, 170-pound Los Angeles native ran for two touchdowns in the 2012 Rose Bowl victory over Wisconsin. The next season in the Fiesta Bowl win over Kansas State, he ran the opening kickoff 94 yards for a touchdown.

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Clemson wide receiver Sammy Watkins is off to the NFL. A person familiar with the wideout's decision said the record-setting Watkins would give up his final season with the Tigers to make himself available for the draft. The person requested anonymity since the school had not officially announced Watkins' intentions. …

Miami Coach Al Golden said he is not a candidate for any other job, ending days of silence and speculation about his future with the Hurricanes. Golden's statement did not specifically mention Penn State, his alma mater, which reportedly targeted him as a top candidate to replace Bill O'Brien as coach. …

Backup quarterback Fredi Knighten threw a 13-yard pass to Allen Muse with 32 seconds left to lift Arkansas State past Ball State, 23-20, in the GoDaddy Bowl at Mobile, Ala. The Red Wolves (8-5) won the bowl for a second straight season, despite losing starting quarterback Adam Kennedy to a knee injury in the first half. Ball State (10-3) had a chance to tie at the end of regulation, but Scott Secor's 38-yard field-goal attempt was blocked as time expired.

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