Allen intends to declare for NFL Draft

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Hours before the hiring of Sonny Dykes as Cal football’s next head coach, wide receiver Keenan Allen announced on Wednesday that he intends to declare for next year’s NFL Draft.

Forgoing his senior season, the Greensboro, N.C. native has etched his name into the Cal record books as the all-time leader in receptions with 205. Allen surpassed Geoff McArthur with his 203rd reception against Utah on Oct. 27. Allen injured his knee in the game, prematurely ending his junior season and forcing him to play his last game for Cal.

“I am grateful for all of the opportunities the University of California has provided me over the past three seasons,” Allen said in his announcement.  “I have always dreamed of having an opportunity to play in the NFL, and my time at Cal has helped me get to the point in my career where I believe I am ready to take that next step.”

Allen ranks third in receiving yards and seventh in touchdown receptions all-time with 2,570 and 17, respectively.

A five-star recruit out of high school, Allen started his first Cal game against UC Davis in 2010. He recorded 4 catches, 128 receiving yards, and two touchdowns and continued to climb the NFL Draft stock ladder into becoming a likely first-round pick.

In 2011, Allen caught 98 passes for 1343 yards and six touchdowns from his half-brother, Zach Maynard. He earned all Pac-12 honors and was a finalist to the Biletnikoff Award, an accolade presented to the top wide receiver in college football.

His stats dipped in 2012 with 61 catches for 737 yards and six touchdowns in nine games, but Allen’s draft stock to the NFL never took a step back. CBS Sports project Allen as the thirteenth best prospect of 2012 — the highest amongst all wide receivers.

Contact Seung Y. Lee at [email protected]