Today, UCLA defensive tackle Kenny Clark declared on his Twitter account that he would be leaving school early to enter the 2016 NFL Draft:
In Todd McShay’s first-round mock draft from earlier this month (ESPN Insider Access required), he projected that Clark would be the 28th overall selection, or selected by the Denver Broncos, currently an elite defensive team. Also earlier this month, Clark was one of two UCLA Bruins named to All-America teams by the Associated Press.
Clark played on the same defensive unit for the same three seasons (2013-15) as linebacker Myles Jack, who withdrew from the school early this season, when a knee injury limited his junior year to just three games played. Jack was projected as the 14th overall pick by McShay in the same mock draft.
Even when both potential first-round prospects were healthy, in 2014, the Bruins were 79th in the nation in allowing 28.1 points per game. In 2015, their record slumped from 10-3 to 8-5, although their defensive marginally improved, to 26.0 points per game. UCLA finished this season with a loss last weekend in the Foster Farms Bowl to the sub-.500 Nebraska Cornhuskers.