Texas Tech WR Crabtree to enter draft

LUBBOCK, TEXAS (TICKER) —Texas Tech All-American wide receiver Michael Crabtree announced Tuesday that he will forgo his final two years of eligibility to enter the 2009 NFL draft.

The only two-time Biletnikoff winner as the nation’s top receiver, Crabtree made the announcement official Tuesday during a news conference. He is projected as a top-five pick in the draft.

“It was a hard decision to make,” Crabtree said. “A lot of times it was hard when I was little. Money was a big problem, and I feel like this is the best decision. I’m doing what’s best for my family.”

The talented redshirt sophomore, who suffered a high ankle sprain in Texas Tech’s regular-season finale against Baylor, received a favorable MRI result last Friday.

“Any time you get hurt and play on an injury, you’re going to hurt it even more,” Crabtree said. “Now I have time to get a lot of rehabilitation in, and I will be doing that every day.”

Crabtree caught 97 passes for 1,165 yards and 19 touchdowns this season. As good as those numbers were, they pale in comparison to his record-breaking freshman campaign of 2007.

The 6-3, 214-pounder set NCAA freshman records by hauling in 134 passes for 1,962 yards and 22 touchdowns a season ago.

“He says, ‘All I see is balls in the air,’” Texas Tech coach Mike Leach said. “I don’t think he thinks about much other than that.”

The highlight of Crabtree’s sophomore season was one of the most memorable plays of the college football season.

On November 1, Crabtree and Graham Harrell hooked up on a last second 28-yard touchdown pass, lifting the Red Raiders to 39-33 win over then-No. 1 Texas that dashed the Longhorns’ national title hopes.

“I’m proud of everything I did,” Crabtree said of his time in Lubbock. “I was proud to be a Red Raider and go out there every Saturday. I was even proud to go to practice. I had so much fun in college. That’s the truth, I had fun.”