Iowa tight end T.J. Hockenson has made his final decision and will be entering his name for the 2019 NFL Draft.
Hockenson was considering both sides heavily, but decided to pursue a career in the NFL after two great seasons in Iowa City. The Hawkeyes confirmed the tight end’s decision through a release on Monday morning.
The announcement came via social media on Monday.
“My dream has always been to play in the NFL,” Hockenson wrote. “I believe now is the right time.”
— TJ Hockenson (@TheeHOCK8) January 14, 2019
Hockenson ended the 2018 season with 49 receptions for 760 yards and six touchdowns. He was named the B1G Tight End of the Year and was presented with the Mackey Award, given to college football’s top tight end.
Hockenson’s biggest outing came against Indiana on Oct. 13, catching four passes for 107 yards and two touchdowns. He also had 125 receiving yards on three catches against Wisconsin on Sept. 22.
In two seasons with the Hawkeyes, Hockenson totaled 73 receptions for 1,080 yards and nine touchdowns. He also recorded one rushing touchdown this season against Minnesota.
Hockenson joins teammate and fellow tight end Noah Fant to leave Iowa early and pursue the NFL. Fant made his decision immediately following the conclusion of the regular season, choosing to sit out of the Outback Bowl. The Hawkeyes defeated Mississippi State 27-22.
Together, Hockenson and Fant produced one of the best tight end combinations in the country. The tandem combined for 88 catches for 1,279 yards and 14 total touchdowns. Hockenson and Fant ranked No. 1 and No. 2 in receiving yardage for the Hawkeyes, respectively.
Iowa is losing three players to early entry in the 2019 NFL Draft. Defensive back Amani Hooker is the other player to declare.