Colorado State Rams running back Dee Hart has officially made his decision to enter the NFL Draft after just one season in Fort Collins. Hart's decisions doesn't come as much of a surprise to those following the situation. Prior to the Royal Purple Las Vegas Bowl, Hart hinted that he had already made his decision and would announce his decision after the bowl game.
"It was just a dream I always had growing up, and it's an opportunity I have this season, so I want to take advantage of it," Hart told the Loveland Reporter-Herald.
Hart came to the Rams after two knee surgeries that cut his career short at the University of Alabama. Coach Jim McElwain and the Rams welcomed him to a team that was lacking experience at running back, and both the school and Hart benefited from his only year as a Ram. Hart carried the ball 194 times for 1,275 yards and 16 touchdowns while catching 18 passes for 189 yards and two touchdowns.
Hart, who already received his undergraduate degree from Alabama, is the second running back in two years to leave Colorado State early to pursue a career in the NFL. Last year, top running back Kapri Bibbs declared for the draft after having the best individual rushing season in school history with 1,741 yards and the nation's best 31 touchdowns.
Colorado State is in a better position after Hart's decision than they were a year ago after Bibbs declared for the draft. The Rams return their second and third leading rushers in running backs Treyous Jarrells and Jasen Oden. Jarrells had 87 carries for 450 yards and six touchdowns. Oden carried the ball 46 times for 276 yards and two touchdowns. The Ram's backfield will also include Dalyn Dawkins, nephew of former All-Pro defensive back Brian Dawkins, who sat out the 2014 season after transferring from Purdue. Running back Deron Thompson, who saw limited time as a true freshman, also should be in the mix at running back next year for Colorado State. Thompson gained 86 yards on 23 carries this past season. The Rams currently do not have a running back committed in their 2015 recruiting class.