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Adrian Clayborn to Stay for Senior Year with Iowa Hawkeyes

TAMPA, FL - JANUARY 01:  Adrian Clayborn #94 of the Iowa Hawkeyes celebrates after an interception against the South Carolina Gamecocks during the Outback Bowl on January 1, 2009 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida.  (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Scott Halleran/Getty Images
Tim WeidemanAnalyst IDecember 22, 2009

Hawkeye fans rejoice!

Adrian Clayborn has decided to return to the Iowa Hawkeyes for his senior year, forgoing the 2010 NFL Draft.

Clayborn said he still had things to prove, even though he thought he was ready for the NFL.

After talking to former Hawkeye Shonn Greene, Clayborn told the Iowa City Press-Citizen his decision was much easier.

Hmm...

Perhaps Greene has doubts about whether or not he should have left the Hawkeyes a year early? Can't say he's had a spectacular year with the New York Jets—hasn't been a bad year, though.

What could have happened if Greene had returned for the Hawkeyes this year?

Now that's something to sit and daydream about for a while...

2,500 yards, 30 TDs, help the Hawkeyes win a Big Ten championship, and a trip to the Rose Bowl all sound swell...

Sorry—back to Clayborn.

The Hawkeyes' 11th-ranked defense will certainly benefit from Clayborn returning one year smarter and one year stronger—just like defensive coordinator Norm Parker said.

Clayborn was projected by most as a second or third-round pick in the NFL Draft.

Clayborn may have made the right move.

Barring something horrible happening to Iowa's big guy (knock on wood), Clayborn's stock will only go up for the 2011 draft. A year such as Nebraska's Ndamukong Suh may not be likely but, hey, it could happen.

One can only hope Iowa's other juniors considering the draft follow suit and return for their final years.

If junior cornerback Amari Spievey decides to stay, the Hawkeyes would return nine starters from a defense that, at times, dominated.

The deadline to declare for the draft is Jan. 15.

Iowa has an Orange Bowl to fight for between now and then. Let's take things one day at a time.

 

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