Hamilton, Washington to Turn Professional


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Hamilton concluded the season with 62 receptions for 1026 yards and 10 touchdowns.

Clemson, SC-Clemson juniors Derrick Hamilton and Donnell Washington
will pass up their final year of eligibility and enter the NFL draft.
Both were second-team All-ACC players for the 9-4 and 22nd ranked
(both final polls) Tigers this past season. This is the first time
since the 2000 season that Clemson has had a player leave early for
the NFL.


"We appreciate the contributions both Donnell and Derrick
made to our program the last four years and we wish them well in
their pursuit of a professional career," said head coach Tommy
Bowden. "Their departure will give some incoming freshmen an
opportunity to help our team next year."


"I want to thank all of my coaches, teammates and the Clemson
fans for all their support the last four years," said Hamilton, who
met with Bowden Friday morning. "Clemson is a great place, I will
miss it. It has been a rewarding experience to represent Clemson
University."


First-team All-America linebacker Keith Adams was the last to leave
after his junior year in 2000. When Adams left, he was drafted by
Tennessee in the sixth round, but did not make a club in 2001. He
is now in his third year in the NFL, currently with the Philadelphia
Eagles.


This will be the first time since 1998 that Clemson has lost
two players with eligibility to the NFL draft. That year Rahim
Abdullah and Corey Hulsey both left with one season of eligibility
remaining. The only other year Clemson lost two players was in 1990
when Dexter Davis and Chris Gardocki turned professional with a year
remaining. Gardocki is still playing in the NFL with the Cleveland
Browns.


Prior to this year, Clemson had nine players leave for the
NFL with eligibility remaining. Eight of the nine eventually made it
to the NFL. Ronald Williams was the only one who did not, but he
played nine years in the Canadian Football League.


Hamilton concluded the season with 62 receptions for 1026
yards and 10 touchdowns. He finished his career as the school's
all-time leader in receptions, kickoff return yards, and all-purpose
running. He had 167 catches, breaking Rod Gardner's record by one.
He joined Gardner as the only players in Clemson history to gain over
1000 yards receiving on one season. His 10 reception touchdowns
established a Clemson single season record. He averaged 34.5 yards
per kickoff return this year, including a 100-yard return against
North Carolina.


Washington led Clemson's defensive front in tackles with 56
during the 2003 season. He had 10 tackles for loss, including four
sacks and led the team in quarterback pressures with 25. He had a
season high nine tackles at Wake Forest and had eight in the win over
Duke. Washington started all 13 games each of the last two seasons.


Clemson Players Who have Turned Professional Prior to Senior Year

Year	Player, Pos	        Draft Result
1989	Terry Allen, RB	        9th round, Minnesota Vikings
1990	Dexter Davis, CB	4th round, Arizona Cardinals
	Chris Gardocki, P	3rd round, Chicago Bears
1992	Ronald Williams, RB	Not drafted, played in Canada
1996	Trevor Pryce, DT	1st round, Denver Broncos
1997	Anthony Simmons, LB	1st round, Seattle Seahawks
1998	Rahim Abdullah, OLB	2nd round, Cleveland Browns
	Corey Hulsey, OT	Not Drafted, Free Agent, Buffalo
2000	Keith Adams, LB	        7th round, Tennessee Titans
2003    Derrick Hamilton, WR
        Donnell Washington, DT

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