Miami edge rusher Greg Rousseau has informed Hurricanes coach Manny Diaz that he will opt out of the 2020 college football season, becoming the latest high-profile prospect to skip fall competition amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Just actually, while we were speaking, Greg Rousseau let me know he is not going to play football this fall. He is opting out, very similar to what you’ve seen in college football,” Diaz told reporters during a Zoom call on Thursday, per MiamiHurricanes.com’s Christy Chirinos. “… We want to thank him for everything he’s done for the Miami Hurricanes and we’re going to support him every way that we can, with him looking to achieve his dreams of becoming a great player in the National Football League.”
Rousseau (6-foot-7, 265 pounds, per school measurements) enjoyed a breakout season in 2019, earning first-team All-ACC honors after compiling a league-high 15.5 sacks and 19.5 tackles for loss. He also was named the ACC’s Defensive Rookie of the Year. Rousseau would have been a third-year sophomore this fall. He possesses remarkable length and quickness off the edge, although he played multiple positions across the Hurricanes’ defensive front last season.
NFL.com draft analyst and former scout Daniel Jeremiah recently watched three of Rousseau’s 2019 game tapes and compared him to Minnesota Vikings Pro Bowl pass rusher Danielle Hunter. Jeremiah also considers Rousseau the best 2021 draft prospect he’s studied so far.
Uncertainty surrounding player safety amid the pandemic has compelled a growing number of players to opt out of the season. Rousseau is the fourth high-profile draft prospect to do so, joining Virginia Tech CB Caleb Farley, Minnesota WR Rashod Bateman and Penn State LB Micah Parsons.
Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.
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