FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. -- Arkansas defensive end Jamaal Anderson
and cornerback Chris Houston will skip their final season of
college eligibility to enter the NFL draft, coach Houston Nutt said
Anderson was a first-team All-Southeastern Conference selection
and an honorable mention All-American as a junior this season. The
Little Rock native led the SEC in sacks with 13.5 and was second in
the league with 19.5 tackles for loss.
Anderson led the team with 26 quarterback hurries and finished a
half-sack short of tying the Razorbacks' single-season record of 14
held by Henry Ford and Steven Conley.
Houston, from Austin, Texas, finished the season with 45
tackles, a team-high three interceptions, 13 pass break-ups and two
fumbles forced. He held Southern California receiver Dwayne Jarrett
to a season-low performance and also held Tennessee's Robert
Meachem and Vanderbilt's Earl Bennett to yardage totals well under
The NFL draft is April 28-29.
Nutt lamented the loss of both players, but said he understood
the draw of the NFL. He said Anderson had been "an excellent
student-athlete and an excellent role model."
Nutt said he and his coaching staff talked to Anderson "long
and hard" about his options.
"I understand when you have the capability to be a first-round
draft pick that is difficult to turn down," the Razorbacks' coach
Nutt said playing in the NFL had also been a longtime dream for
"Anytime you recruit talented players, you are aware that this
day might come," Nutt said. "We wish Chris the best and
appreciate all of his contributions to the Razorbacks."
Anderson, in a prepared statement, thanked Nutt and his brother
Danny Nutt for their recruiting efforts, "coming into my home and
offering me an opportunity to become part of the Razorback family.
They made my parents feel comfortable and confident that they would
do what was best for me and help me develop both as a player and as
He also thanked Arkansas defensive coordinator Reggie Herring
and defensive line coach Tracy Rocker "for all they did to help me
develop and grow as a football player. All the guys who played with
me on the defense know that Herring and Rocker demanded nothing
less than our best and full effort in practices and games. They are
great teachers and I feel fortunate to have had them as my