Saquon Barkley Doesn't Know When He'll Announce NFL Draft Decision

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistDecember 29, 2017

UNIVERSITY PARK, PA - NOVEMBER 18:  Saquon Barkley #26 of the Penn State Nittany Lions carries the ball on a touchdown run during the first quarter against the Nebraska Cornhuskers on November 18, 2017 at Beaver Stadium in University Park, Pennsylvania. Penn State defeats Nebraska 56-44.  (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)
Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

Penn State Nittany Lions running back Saquon Barkley said Thursday he hasn't set a timetable for announcing his NFL draft decision. 

"Whenever it hits me," Barkley said, per ESPN.com's Dan Murphy. "It could be the day after [the bowl game] I know I'm going to stay or going to leave. It could be the last day [to declare]."

Barkley added that while he's tried to stay focused on the Nittany Lions' impending matchup with the Washington Huskies in the Fiesta Bowl, thoughts regarding a potential draft declaration have crossed his mind. 

"It's hard because it's right in front of you," he said. "I'm human. I have taken time to think about it. I talked to [coach James] Franklin about it before the season even started. I talked to my family about it. The best way I try to deal with it is to live in the moment and appreciate the time I have here."

Should Barkley declare, he'll be one of the most coveted prospects in the 2018 draft class. 

Through 12 games, the junior has totaled 1,728 yards and 19 touchdowns from scrimmage to complement two kickoff return scores. 

Bleacher Report's Matt Miller has Barkley listed as his top prospect and has given him "the highest grade" he's ever given to a running back. 

"He's a five-tool guy," former Penn State offensive coordinator Joe Moorhead told Miller. "He can do it all. He has speed, power, can run through you or hurdle over you. You can put him in the slot. He can return kicks. And he's worked hard to become a great pass protector."