Boise State vs BYU Football

Boise State STUD Curtis Weaver (99) celebrates after a sack against BYU on Nov. 3, 2018, at Albertsons Stadium in Boise.

Boise State redshirt junior STUD Curtis Weaver announced Saturday that he will skip his senior season and enter the 2020 NFL Draft.

The news was expected after Weaver put together a dominant 2019 season. He ranked fifth in the nation with 13.5 sacks and tied for ninth nationally with 18.5 tackles-for-loss heading into the bowl season.

Weaver’s decision comes just four days after Boise State redshirt junior left tackle Ezra Cleveland announced he was entering the 2020 NFL Draft.

“I poured my heart and soul into Boise State football every time I set foot onto the field,” Weaver said in a statement released on his social media accounts. “I am forever grateful and honored to be a Bronco.”

Both Weaver and Cleveland have selected agent Ron Slavin, who represents a number of former Boise State players including 2018 first round pick Leighton Vander Esch. The two will head to Dallas in the next few days to begin training for the NFL Scouting Combine in late February.

Weaver arrived at Boise State as a 296-pound defensive tackle but lost nearly 40 pounds on the way to becoming one of the best pass rushers in school history.

“I came here as a fat boy and I’m leaving as a young man,” Weaver wrote.

Weaver has been named to nine All-America lists in recent weeks, including a trio of first team selections by The Sporting News, CBS Sports and Walter Camp. He was named a second team All-American by the Associated Press, ESPN, The Athletic, USA Today, the AFCA and the FWAA.

The 6-foot-3, 265-pound Weaver had multiple sacks in three games this season, including when he set a Boise State record with four sacks against Portland State on Sept. 14. He also had three sacks at UNLV to become the Mountain West all-time career sacks leader. His 34.0 career sacks ranks No. 2 in Boise State history, and was the most of any active player in college football.

Weaver thanked Boise State coach Bryan Harsin, defensive line coach Spencer Danielson, the rest of the coaches and support staff and the fans in his statement Saturday.

“You all played a part in shaping me over the course of my career,” Weaver said. “Thank you to all my teammates. You all made my four years in Boise memorable and I will never forget the work we all put in together.”

ESPN NFL Draft analyst Todd McShay recently had the pass rusher going No. 20 overall to the Miami Dolphins in a mock draft.

Weaver and Cleveland’s early departures extend Boise State’s streak of having an early entrant in the NFL Draft to seven years. DeMarcus Lawrence (2013), Jay Ajayi (2014), Kamalei Correa (2015), Jeremy McNichols (2016), Leighton Vander Esch (2017) and Alexander Mattison (2018) all left for the draft with eligibility still remaining.

Boise State has had just five first round NFL Draft picks in school history. Vander Esch was the most recent, going No. 19 overall to the Dallas Cowboys in 2018. Weaver has a shot at becoming the sixth.

The departure of Weaver means the Broncos will lose all four starters along the defensive line. Defensive end Chase Hatada and tackles David Moa and Sonatane Lui also ended their Boise State careers in the Las Vegas Bowl.

Boise State opens the 2020 season on Sept. 5 against Georgia Southern.

B.J Rains has covered Boise State athletics for the Idaho Press since 2013. He is an Associated Press Top 25 men's basketball poll voter, and also contributes to KBOI-TV as a Boise State insider.

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