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Badgers' Calhoun makes draft declaration official

MADISON, Wis. -- Brian Calhoun hopes his short but stellar
stay at Wisconsin was enough to make a good impression on the NFL.

Calhoun, who played only one year for the Badgers after
transferring from Colorado, announced Thursday he would skip his
senior year to enter the NFL draft.

The 5-foot-10 running back said the decision came down to his
belief he was ready for the next level -- and he anticipates being
picked on the first day of the draft.

"It was time for me to make that jump," Calhoun said.

In his lone season with the Badgers, Calhoun became the second
player in Big Ten history to surpass 1,000 yards rushing and 500
yards receiving in the same season and led Wisconsin to a Capital
One Bowl win over Auburn.

Wisconsin came into the bowl game as a heavy underdog, but
Calhoun rushed for 213 yards and a touchdown. He finished with
1,636 rushing yards on the season, fifth most in Wisconsin history,
and 22 rushing touchdowns, a school record.

Calhoun acknowledged concerns that he wouldn't be able to take
the pounding of the NFL at his college playing weight of 194
pounds. But he said he's already up over 200 and expects to play in
the 205 to 210 range in the pros.

He proved he could take on a heavy load at Wisconsin with 348
rushing attempts, a season record and seventh-most in Big Ten
history.

He also caught 53 receptions for 571 yards, both season records
for a Wisconsin running back.

Calhoun said he expects some teams will want to use him as a
third-down back to begin. But he envisions developing into the kind
of tailback that can carry the ball 20 times a game.

"If I was a second-day pick, I wouldn't be entering the
draft," said the Wisconsin native. "Obviously, I have a lot of
faith in myself that I'll be a first-day pick."

Calhoun's decision leaves the Badgers with little experience at
running back for the upcoming season. Backup Booker Stanley remains
suspended from the team after his arrest in a fight with his
girlfriend.

Sophomore Jamil Walker has 44 carries for 198 yards in his
career.