ATHENS, Ga. --- University of Georgia junior cornerback Asher Allen announced on Tuesday afternoon that he will be entering the 2009 NFL Draft.
“This was the hardest decision of my life because of my love and respect for Georgia and everyone who is affiliated with Georgia, including the fans, my teammates, my coaches, the academic staff and everyone else ,” Allen said. “I have been chasing this dream of playing in the NFL and after making this decision with my family, I feel like I am ready for this next step. But I owe everyone the world who has helped me out during my time at Georgia.”
Allen, a 5-10, 198-pound native of Tucker, Ga., started all 13 games this past season for the 10th-ranked Bulldogs and ranked fourth on the team in tackles with 53. Also, he led the team with seven pass breakups and had one fumble recovery.
His final game as a Bulldog resulted in a team-high nine solo tackles, including one sack, during Georgia’s 24-12 win over #19 Michigan State in the Capital One Bowl in Orlando on Jan. 1.
Allen was one of 13 semifinalists for the 2008 Jim Thorpe Award, which is given annually to the nation’s top defensive back. He was also named to Phil Steele’s 2008 All-Southeastern Conference Third Team.
In 2007, Allen finished second on the team in tackles with 64. Overall, Allen started the past 24 games at Georgia. He finished with 141 tackles (114 solo, 27 asst.) and three interceptions, including two against #10 Hawaii in the 2008 Sugar Bowl, in his career. Allen excelled as a kick returner too, setting a school record with 28 returns for 690 yards in 2007.
“Asher Allen has been a great part of our football team as well as our overall athletic program over the past three years,” head coach Mark Richt said. “We will certainly miss him, however we wish him the very best in the NFL draft and with his professional football aspirations in the future.”
Allen joins quarterback Matthew Stafford and running back Knowshon Moreno as Bulldog underclassmen entering the 2009 NFL draft.
Photo Credit: SEC Sports Media