A former walk-on moved closer to fulfilling his NFL dreams on Thursday when UCLA tight end Caleb Wilson announced he was forgoing his final season of college eligibility to turn professional.
The redshirt junior, who started his college career as a walk-on at USC before transferring to UCLA, made the announcement on Twitter, thanking his coaches for giving him a scholarship to play for the Bruins when nobody else would. He also thanked his teammates for their friendship.
“Although I will miss playing with my brothers,” Wilson wrote, “I am excited to attack my life long dream of playing in the NFL. I will be leaving UCLA with my degree, and the fulfillment of my college football dreams.”
Wilson was the only Bruin to be selected as a first-team member of the All-Pac-12 Conference football team after a season in which he led all Football Bowl Subdivision tight ends in catches per game (5.0), receiving yards per game (80.4) and receiving yards (965). His totals of 60 catches and 965 yards were the most ever by a UCLA tight end in one season.
The 6-foot-4 Wilson was a semifinalist for the Mackey Award, which goes to the nation’s top college tight end.
Wilson’s departure leaves Devin Asiasi and Jordan Wilson (no relation), who combined for eight catches last season, as the team’s top returning tight ends.