Marshawn Lynch announced Tuesday that he has declared himself eligible for the NFL Draft.
Speculation about the Cal junior tailback's decision has been rampant the better part of the season as he piled up numbers, accolades and praise from scouts. With all of the reasons to leave Berkeley mounting, he managed to evade questions about his decision until Tuesday.
"Playing in the NFL has always been a dream of mine," he said. "Right now, it is just hitting me that my dreams are going to have the chance to come true."
Despite two sprained ankles and an offensive line that lost three players to the NFL, Lynch earned Pac-10 Offensive Player of the Year honors by rushing for 1,356 yards and 11 touchdowns. He's got the size (5-foot-11, 217 pounds), the speed (4.5 in the 40-yard dash) and the hands that make scouts drool.
According to most draft gurus, Lynch will be a first-round pick and will be the second running back selected, behind Oklahoma's Adrian Peterson.
Lynch's favorite response to questions about potentially leaving school early was to say, "I ain't going anywhere," before winking. He took it a step further after the Bears' Holiday Bowl win, grabbing a microphone on the field and telling the crowd, "One more year."
You read it here first (or maybe second or third) Marshawn will absolutely wow the scouts on Pro Day and leapfrog Peterson as the first running back selected. Also, the Raiders will take a hard look at keeping the hometown product at home. Marshawn is already a better passer than Brooks or Walters.