Jan. 5, 2016

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Sure-tackling and play-making All-America safety Vonn Bell will forego his senior season with the Ohio State Buckeyes next year in order to enter the 2016 NFL Draft, set for April 28-30 in Chicago.

“I have decided to make myself eligible and enter the 2016 NFL Draft,” Bell, a junior from Rossville, Ga. (near Chattanooga, Tenn.), said. “It has been an honor and a privilege to play at the best university in the country, to play for the best coach in the country, and to help bring the 2014 national championship to The Ohio State University and the best fans in the country. My time here has been very special to me and my family. And I thank all Buckeye fans for their love and support.”

Bell was a two-year starter who played in 42 games the past three seasons with 27 starts. He was named a first-team All-American this past season by the Associated Press, The Sporting News and He ranked fifth on the team in tackles with 65 and led with nine passes defended, including two interceptions. He was named all-Big Ten Conference by the league’s voting media.

Bell’s 176 career tackles ranked third among his teammates and included a 92-tackle sophomore season that represented a 12-year high for an Ohio State safety. He also ranked ninth nationally as a sophomore with six interceptions. He had nine for his career to go along with a team-high 24 passes defended.

Bell is among a contingent of Buckeye underclassmen who have elected to bypass a season (or two) to pursue an NFL career.