Ohio State DB Malik Hooker entering National Football League draft

"This growth has led me make one of the toughest yet most exciting decisions of my life".

While the decision to head to the next level is hardly a surprise (and one OSU coaches have undoubtedly been preparing for for several months now), losing a player of Hooker's caliber is always bittersweet.

If you were an National Football League team, who would you draft - Malik Hooker or Jabrill Peppers?

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"And of course I would like to extend my thanks to Buckeye Nation!"

"I want to thank God first and foremost for blessing me with the opportunity to make this decision".

Hooker recorded seven interceptions, three for touchdowns, and 74 tackles in 13 games en route to unanimous All-American honors this season.

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Hooker has drawn comparisons to National Football League legend Ed Reed, and his ability was on full display in Saturday night's Fiesta Bowl, where he covered an absurd amount of ground to pick off Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson. After the Buckeyes' 31-0 loss to Clemson in the Fiesta Bowl on Saturday, Barrett indicated that is not likely.

As the season wore on, Hooker drew increasing interest from draft analysts and has been projected as anywhere from a possible top 10 pick to a sure first-rounder. Hooker was barely more than a fringe candidate to start heading into last offseason but emerged into an interception machine for the Buckeyes this past fall.

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