Arkansas tight end Henry declares for NFL draft
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) Hunter Henry announced Monday that he is leaving Arkansas and declaring for the NFL draft following a season in which he was named an All-American and won the Mackey Award as the nation's top tight end.
Henry had 51 catches for 739 yards this season for the Razorbacks (8-5), who ended their season with a 45-23 win over Kansas State in the Liberty Bowl. The 6-foot-5, 253-pound junior ends his career with 116 catches for 1,661 yards and nine touchdowns.
''I have grown so much as a person and player these past three years at the University of Arkansas,'' Henry said. ''I have enjoyed my experience more than I could have ever imagined.''
In addition to winning the Mackey Award, Henry was a first-team selection to The Associated Press All-American team as well as a first-team All-Southeastern Conference selection. He was the second player in school history to win the Mackey Award, following D.J. Williams in 2010.
Arkansas coach Bret Bielema said last month Henry had received a ''very high'' draft evaluation grade from the NFL, coming as little surprise considering his 51 catches this season came without a single dropped pass.
Henry was a key part of a rebuilding job at Arkansas in the wake of the Bobby Petrino scandal and firing, as well as the disappointing season that followed under interim coach John L. Smith. The Little Rock native was one of Bielema's most important signings in his first recruiting class, catching 28 passes for 409 yards as a freshman while the Razorbacks struggled to a 3-9 record in 2013.
As Henry emerged as a top blocker and receiving threat, Arkansas improved - finishing 7-6 last season as the tight end caught 37 passes for 513 yards.
He improved once again this season, and his 1,661 career receiving yards are second among tight ends in school history behind Williams.