Keith Adams to Leave Tigers for NFL


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<font class=caption>Adams had 19 tackles for loss in 2000, and finished with 54 for his career, third in Clemson history.</font>
Adams had 19 tackles for loss in 2000, and finished with 54 for his career, third in Clemson history.

Clemson, SC -- Clemson junior linebacker Keith Adams announced Tuesday that
he will forego his final year of eligibility and enter the NFL draft.
Adams had a chance to become the first three-time first-team All-American
in school history had he come back for the 2001 season, but he decided to
enter the NFL draft this April.


"After evaluating information provided to me and after consulting
my family and some NFL people, I have decided to forego my senior year
and enter the 2001 NFL draft," said Adams. "I want to first give glory
to God for giving me the talents to be in this position. I also want to
thank my parents (Julius and Pat). I also want to thank Coach Tommy
Bowden. The last two seasons have been very exciting and rewarding. I
also want to thank Coach Reggie Herring, who has done so much for my career
and development as a football player. I also want to thank all of my
teammates. Without them I could never have reached this day.


"Being around the guys the last three year, I have really enjoyed
my experience at Clemson. This was the best possible place for me. I
will always cherish my time at Clemson. "But, I feel this is the
best decision for me. I feel I am ready to go on to the NFL.


Adams, a native of College Park, GA, finished his Clemson career as
the #6 ranked tackler in history with 379. He had 148 tackles this year
and finished sixth in the nation in tackles per game. He was a finalist
for the Butkus Award (nation's top linebacker) and the Chuck Bednarick
Award (nation's top defensive player). He had 19 tackles for loss in
2000, and finished with 54 for his career, third in Clemson history,
trailing only the Perry Brothers (Michael Dean and Williams). He had seven
sacks in 2000 and finished his Clemson career tied for third in that
category.


PRESS CONFERENCE AUDIO
Keith Adams on leaving Clemson for the NFL


Adams had 186 tackles, 35 tackles for loss and 16 sacks as a
sophomore in 1999. He led the nation in tackles and tackles for loss and
finished second in quarterback sacks. Over his last two years he had at
least one tackles for loss in 23 of 24 games, including a record 20
consecutive games at one stretch. He finished his Clemson career with 14
school records, including most tackles in a game and a season, most sacks
in a game and a season, and most tackles for loss in a game and a season.


"Keith has been a very productive player for us in my two years at
Clemson and I wish him the best," said Bowden. "He has made a lot of
tackles, but he has also been a big contributor when it comes to the
intangibles. Keith has a great work ethic and that rubbed off on his
teammates. He represented the school well and will be missed."


Adams is the ninth player in Clemson history to give up his senior
year for the NFL draft. The others who have done it are Terry Allen
(1989), Dexter Davis (1990), Chris Gardocki (1990), Ronald Williams (1992),
Trevor Pryce (1996), Anthony Simmons (1997), Rahim Abdullah (1998), and
Corey Hulsey (1998).

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