Palo Alto, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Stanford offensive lineman David Yankey, a key part of three straight Cardinal teams to reach a BCS bowl game, announced Friday that he will bypass his final season of eligibility and declare for the NFL Draft.
Yankey started 40 games for a Stanford program that went 34-7 over the past three seasons and earned All-America honors in each of the last two. The Georgia native was the Cardinal's regular left guard as a redshirt freshman in 2011, then switched to left tackle the following year before moving back to guard as a senior.
The soon-to-be 22-year-old had the option of returning for a fifth season after taking a medical redshirt in 2010, but is on track to earn his undergraduate degree this spring.
"I reached my decision following conversations with family and coaches, and am greatly looking forward to the next chapter in life," said Yankey in a statement. "The decision was not easy. I have loved my time at Stanford and am a proud member of Nerd Nation. I am humbled at the prospect of joining a long list of Stanford alumni currently playing in the NFL."
Yankey is expected to be one of the first guards selected in the upcoming draft, which will take place from May 8-10.