Marqise Lee Declares for 2014 NFL Draft

Steve Dykes

The junior wide receiver will not be back for the Trojans next season, but will likely be a first round pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.

USC wide receiver Marqise Lee announced via Twitter Friday that he will forego his senior season to enter the 2014 NFL Draft.

Lee's last game in a USC uniform was one to remember after he caught seven passes for 118 yards and two touchdowns in the Trojans' 45-20 Las Vegas Bowl victory over Fresno State.

After winning the 2012 Biletkinoff Award, which is given to the nation's top wide receiver, Lee returned in 2013 as one of the favorites for the Heisman Trophy after finishing fourth in balloting in 2012.

The 6'0'', 195-pounder's junior season did not pan out the way he and Trojan fans hoped it would though, as injuries, coaching changes and the lack of a stable quarterback early in the season resulted in him finishing the year with only 57 receptions for 791 yards and four touchdowns. In 2012, Lee more than doubled that with 118 catches for 1,721 yards and 14 touchdowns.

Lee broke out as one of the nation's top wide receivers his freshman year, playing alongside former USC receiver Robert Woods, when Lee caught 73 passes for 1,143 yards and 11 touchdowns.

He finishes his USC career with 248 receptions, four short of Woods, who holds the school record for most catches. Though, he owns or shares 24 other USC records including most career receiving yards with 3,655.

Lee is ranked as the No. 3 draft-eligible wide receiver by NFLDraftScout.com and is projected to be the 15th pick in draft overall, according to ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay's mock draft.

There is no doubt Lee's star-studded play at the wide receiver position, leadership and, not to forget, his contagious smile, will be missed on the USC sidelines next year for the Trojans players and coaching staff.

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