Clemson DE Shaq Lawson tosses name into NFL draft hat

CLEMSON, S.C. -- Clemson junior Shaq Lawson, the Atlantic Coast Conference's defensive player of the year, is giving up his final season with the Tigers to enter the NFL draft.

The defensive end, ranked No. 11 overall among draft prospects by ESPN's Mel Kiper, said he made the choice before Clemson's regular-season finale against South Carolina and wanted to make it known so people would stop asking him.

Lawson leads the top-ranked Tigers with 10 sacks and 22.5 tackles for loss.

The Tigers (13-0) returned to practice Monday to prepare for No. 4 Oklahoma, whom they'll face in the College Football Playoff semifinals in the Orange Bowl on New Year's Eve.

Lawson has been a disruptive force for Clemson in a season in which the team lost eight starters on defense, including first-round NFL picks defensive end Vic Beasley and linebacker Stephone Anthony.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.