Kentucky QB Levis to skip bowl game, enter NFL draft

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Kentucky quarterback Will Levis announced on Wednesday he will forgo his final season of eligibility and declare for the 2023 NFL draft, where the fifth-year senior is viewed as a possible top-10 pick.

Levis said in a social media post that he will also miss the Wildcat'’ matchup with Iowa in the Music City Bowl on New Year's Eve to begin preparations for a pro career.

"After much thought, I have decided to forgo my final college football game, look to that next step, and declare for the NFL draft," Levis wrote.

"To my team-mates, UK staff members, Wildcat community, and (Big Blue Nation), I cannot thank you enough. I'll forever be indebted to all those I had the pleasure to cross paths with here, and my immense love for you will remain strong in my heart, forever."

Levis is considered one of three potential franchise quarterbacks eligible for next year's draft, along with Alabama's Bryce Young and Ohio State's C.J. Stroud.

Young has yet to announce a decision on his future plans, while Stroud is preparing for the Buckeyes' College Football Playoff clash with No. 1 Georgia in the December 31 Peach Bowl.

The 23-year-old Levis established himself as an elite prospect with two outstanding seasons at Kentucky after transferring from Penn State.

He helped the Wildcats to only the fourth 10-win season in program history by throwing for 2,826 yards and 24 touchdowns in 2021, and threw for 2,406 yards and 19 touchdowns in 11 games this season for a Kentucky program that was ranked as high as No. 8 in the Associated Press Top 25.

"Because of Kentucky, I found belief and confidence in myself that had not been reached beforehand and most importantly, we won some incredibly memorable ball games in my college career," Levis said. "It has been a great move forward."