OSU Star Roby Leaving for NFL
Updated: Thursday, November 21 2013, 03:49 PM EST
COLUMBUS (Ken Hines) -- The Buckeyes will have a big void to fill in their secondary during the 2014 season as standout cornerback Bradley Roby prepares to turn his attention to the NFL.
The fourth-year junior will skip his final season of eligibility at OSU to enter the NFL Draft, according to Head Coach Urban Meyer.
"He's going to go, going to move on -- but that's all you ask," Meyer said. "You don't ask for five years nowadays."
The 2012 Big Ten First Team cornerback has long-maintained that 2013 would be his final year in scarlet and gray. Roby decided to remain in school following a stellar 2012 season during which his pro prospects improved dramatically.
"It's no secret -- I think it's great for him, and good for Ohio State," Meyer said of Roby's departure.
It remains to be seen whether Roby's 2013 campaign will help or hurt his NFL stock.
His season began with a one-game suspension due to an altercation at an Indiana bar, and included a poor showing against Wisconsin in which Badgers receiver Jared Abbrederis accounted for more than 200 yards.
Roby was thrown out of the Buckeyes' game against Iowa because of a controversial penalty resulting from his hit on Hawkeyes tight end C.J. Fiedorowicz that was ruled to be targeting by referees.
While struggling at times during the season, Roby's ability to make plays has remained evident. His 2013 highlights include a blocked punt and three interceptions, one of which he returned 63 yards for a score.
Despite his inconsistent junior season, Roby's talent and record of success will likely make him one of the first defensive backs taken off the board during April's NFL draft.
While Roby's departure was long expected, the futures of his fellow juniors Braxton Miller and Ryan Shazier are still up in the air. That uncertainty is causing some anxiety among the OSU fan base -- and likely among the team's coaching staff as well.
Quarterback Miller and linebacker Shazier have yet to elaborate on their plans concerning the upcoming NFL Draft, except to claim those decisions will not be made while the undefeated Buckeyes try to punch their tickets to the BCS National Title Game.