Source: Bryce Brown mulling NFL draft

Kansas State running back Bryce Brown has withdrawn from school and is strongly leaning toward entering the NFL draft, sources said.

Brown has two years of eligibility remaining after playing one year at Tennessee, transferring and playing sparingly last season at Kansas State.

Brian Butler, an adviser to Brown, said that the running back has had communication with coach Bill Snyder "on numerous occasions, and coach is well aware of Bryce's options, and he will support Bryce in whatever decision he chooses."

Brown originally signed with Tennessee in 2009 as the nation's No. 8 overall recruit and No. 2 running back, behind only Alabama's Trent Richardson.

He ran for 460 yards as a freshman at Tennessee before transferring to Kansas State, where he sat out 2010 and was named a 2011 preseason All-Big 12 selection. But he carried only three times for 16 yards and then left the team in September.

Brown has been a party to three NCAA inquiries in his college career.

Last summer, Brown and his brother Arthur, a K-State linebacker, were among athletes named by former Miami booster and convicted felon Nevin Shapiro, who told Yahoo! Sports that he provided cash, cars and other impermissible benefits to 72 athletes and recruits. But the NCAA assured Kansas State that both brothers would be eligible to play in 2011.

In 2010, Brown spent two hours answering questions from NCAA investigators as part of an investigation into Tennessee's recruiting practices under then-coach Lane Kiffin. And in 2009, before he played a game for Tennessee, the NCAA cleared Brown after examining his eligibility, amid allegations that money was improperly raised for him to visit colleges while he was in high school.

Joe Schad is a college football reporter for ESPN. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.