BLACKSBURG, Va., Dec. 3 (UPI) -- Star running back Kevin Jones of Virginia Tech Wednesday confirmed his plans to enter the NFL Draft and skip his senior season in 2004.
Jones, who was named a finalist with Chris Perry of Michigan and Darren Sproles of Kansas State for the Doak Walker Award as the nation's top running back, will leave the Hokies after the Insight Bowl against California on Dec. 26.
"We didn't want to prolong it," his brother, Thomas, told the Roanoke (Va.) Times. "Kevin wanted all the attention put on the team and the bowl, not whether he was staying or leaving."
"It is time for me to take the next step in my life and that is the NFL," Jones said. "I just came to the decision a couple of days ago after meeting with my parents, (running backs) coach (Billy) Hite and head coach (Frank) Beamer."
The junior from Chester, Pa., has rushed for a school-record 1,494 yards and 20 touchdowns this season, and set the school's single-game record with 241 yards against Pittsburgh on Nov. 8.
Jones, likely a Heisman Trophy candidate and a projected first-round pick, was Big East Rookie of the Year in 2001 and is third all time at the school with 3,322 rushing yards and 34 touchdowns.