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UPDATED - Nick Perry headed to the NFL

Updated after the jump - P

This is more a formality than anything else, as it was rumored earlier in the week.

But from this piece in the LAT Nick Perry did let the USC coaching staff know his intentions last week.

Perry, who led the Pac-12 Conference with 91/2 sacks, was long regarded as the most likely to turn pro, especially after completing a season without a major injury for the first time in his Trojans career.

Perry has declined interview requests and could not be reached for comment Friday, but he informed USC coaches of his decision last week, said several people close to the situation.

Again, not surprising.

Perry's leaving leave T.J. McDonald and Mark Barkley still yet to make a decision. Perry was one of those players that Pete Carroll was able to pry from out of state.

Here is his pre-USC Bio...

His 2007 honors included USA Today All-USA first team, Parade All-American, Super Prep All-American, Prep Star All-American, EA Sports All-American first team, All-American second team, Super Prep All-Midwest, Prep Star All-Midwest, All-State, Detroit News All-Metro, Detroit News All-Detroit and Detroit News Dream Team MVP as a senior defensive lineman, linebacker and tight end at King High in Detroit (Mich.).

He had 147 tackles and a state record 36 sacks in 2007, plus caught 14 passes for 310 yards (22.1 avg.) with 8 TDs, as King went 14-0 and won the state title... As a junior in 2006 at McKenzie High in Detroit, he made All-Metro and All-City while getting 75 tackles and 11 sacks... He also played basketball at King.

Perry will be missed but USC will plug the hole.

UPDATE: Here are Kiffin's comments...

"We counseled Nick throughout his decision-making process and we stand behind him on this decision. His career progression at USC continued climbing to a point where he was ready to make the jump to the NFL. He was an awesome pass rushing for us and he created havoc throughout the Pac-12 this year in a league that featured many of the nation's most dangerous passing offenses. He will be a valued addition to any NFL team and should be an attractive choice in the upcoming draft.

Good Luck Nick!!