Rutgers’ junior wide receiver Kenny Britt has recently decided to skip his senior year and test the waters of the NFL this spring. After becoming the Big East’s all-time receiving yards leader during the Papajohns.com bowl, it is hard to argue this All-American has anything left to prove.
Although many Rutgers fans wish they could have convinced him otherwise, going pro is what Kenny decided, and it’s what happens to big-time college programs (something Rutgers is actively trying to become). Yes, it would be great to have All-American caliber players stick around for all four years of their eligibility, but how can anyone be upset when your team produces first and second round talent for the NFL Draft as underclassmen?
Like Ray Rice before him, Kenny is leaving Rutgers on perhaps the highest note possible, a bowl victory and pockets full of records. Kenny Britt’s 2008 season spring-boarded him not only to the top of the Rutgers record books but also placed him in an elite class of former Big East receivers.
Britt leaves the “Banks of the Old Raritan” as the Scarlet Knights’ leader in the following categories:
Career receiving yards – 3,043
Career TD receptions – 17 (tie)
Consecutive 100-yard games – five
Career 100-yard games – 14
Single season receiving yards – 1,371 (2008)
Single season receptions – 87 (2008)
His career receiving yards are now the high-water mark in Big East history, and he tied former Pittsburgh Panther, now Arizona Cardinals all-pro wide receiver, Larry Fitzgerald, for career 100-yard receiving games in conference history with fourteen. Not bad company I’d say.
So Kenny Britt set some Rutgers and Big East records. “Big deal,” some might say. Well, just for good measure, Kenny finished the year averaging 114.2 receiving yards per game, good for No. 2 in the nation.
After this type of career and this All-American worthy season, going pro would be a no-brainer, right? Who wouldn’t bolt for a multi-million dollar contract and the chance to play football at the highest level in the world?
Well, Kenny Britt doesn’t only possess an insane amount of talent but good character as well. He and his family met with Coach Greg Schiano for hours pining over the decision. Kenny’s father graduated from Rutgers and Kenny had a difficult time deciding between completing his degree or leaving school early.
In the end, the draw of the NFL proved to be too tempting to resist. But how could anyone blame him? It’s the opportunity of a lifetime and a dream come true for so many players, and there is no telling how long that door will remain open.
Rutgers fans should be thankful for the three years Kenny Britt gave to the program. Whenever a crucial first down was needed or when a touchdown would have changed a game, Kenny Britt was there.
If he can be half as productive in the NFL as he was during his time at Rutgers, Kenny Britt is going to make one team and an entire fan base extremely happy. He certainly did that for Rutgers.
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