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Suspended Texas CB Holton Hill declares for the 2018 NFL Draft

The Houston Lamar product is now the third underclassmen to declare early.

NCAA Football: Maryland at Texas John Gutierrez-USA TODAY Sports

After missing the final three games of the regular season due to suspension, Texas Longhorns junior cornerback Holton Hill announced on Monday that he’s forgoing his final season of eligibility to enter the 2018 NFL Draft.

Hill missed time after violating team rules and may not have been eligible to play again at the start of the 2018 season, which could have influenced his decision to leave school.

“After careful consideration with my family, I have made the decision to forgo my senior year and turn my focus towards training for the NFL Draft,” Hill said in a statement released by the school.

“The past three years at Texas have been a great learning experience for me, and I appreciate everyone who has helped me throughout my college career, especially Coach Herman, Coach Washington, Coach Orlando and Coach Strong. I am blessed to have had the opportunity to play for such an amazing program at The University of Texas, and I know the values that have been instilled in me and lessons I've learned will continue to propel me forward at the next level.

“I can't say enough about the support my teammates have given me. Those guys are going to always be my teammates, and I know that bond will last way beyond our time here at Texas. I also appreciate the great fans, and even though I'm moving on, I'm always going to be a Longhorn. Thank you all for your support, the best is yet to come.”

Now the third underclassman to declare for the draft, Hill joins left tackle Connor Williams and safety DeShon Elliott in departing. Neither Williams nor Elliott will play in the bowl game.

Hill finished the season with 51 tackles, six passes broken up, two interceptions, and one forced fumble. After a disappointing sophomore season, Hill fulfilled the potential that he flashed as a freshman prior to his suspension, eventually drawing praise from coordinator Todd Orlando as his best defender.

At 6’3 and 200 pounds, Hill has an ideal build for the position, along with enough speed to intrigue NFL teams. Before getting caught for violating team rules, Hill had shut down a number of high-profile wide receivers, including Oklahoma State’s James Washington and Baylor’s Denzel Mims.