TOWSON, Md. – Junior running back Terrance West of Towson University will apply for early entry into the 2014 National Football League draft and will pass up his senior season with the Tigers.
A three-time All-America running back, West was a consensus All-America first team selection in 2013 when he led all college football players with 2,509 rushing yards and 42 touchdowns.
Honored as the 2013 Colonial Athletic Association Offensive Player of the Year and a finalist for the 2013 Walter Payton Award, he led the Tigers to the NCAA FCS championship game. With a record of 13-3, the Tigers were national runners-up.
With 2,509 rushing yards, he shattered the NCAA FCS single season record of 2,326 yards set by Jamaal Branch of Colgate in 2003. He also broke the NCAA FCS record with 42 touchdowns, eclipsing the record of 39 set by Omar Cuff of Delaware in 2007.
In his three-year career at Towson, West ran for 4,849 yards on 802 carries with 84 touchdowns. His 84 career rushing touchdowns tied the NCAA FCS record set by Adrian Peterson of Georgia Southern from 1998 to 2001.
West, who also caught two touchdown passes in his career, ended his career with 86 total touchdowns scored. He ranks third on the NCAA FCS all-time list of touchdown scorers. Brian Westbrook of Villanova holds the record with 89 touchdowns while Peterson is second with 87 touchdowns.
The Tigers’ career rushing leader decided to apply for early entry for the NFL draft shortly after the Tigers’ appearance in the NCAA FCS championship game against North Dakota State on Saturday in Frisco, Texas.
“I met with Terrance on Sunday afternoon and we discussed his projected draft status,” said Towson Coach Rob Ambrose. “After our talk, Terrance went home with that information and discussed his options with his family. Last night, Terrance and his family decided to forgo his senior season and declare for the NFL draft. When we spoke late last night, he promised me that no matter what, he would finish degree work and graduate.
“We wish Terrance and his family all the best as he enters this new chapter of his career,” Ambrose added.
The winner of the Jerry Rice Award as the top freshman in NCAA FCS in 2011, West earned All-CAA first team honors three times. During his career, West was named as the CAA Offensive Player of the Week seven times.
In 2013, he scored at least one touchdown in all 16 games for the Tigers. He also ran for more than 100 yards 12 times and had four 200-plus-yard games. In the Tigers’ NCAA FCS quarter-final victory over No. 2 Eastern Illinois, he set an NCAA FCS playoff record by rushing for 354 yards. He also scored five touchdowns against Eastern Illinois.
West will try to become the sixth player in Towson history to play in an NFL game. Punter Sean Landeta (1985-2004), offensive lineman Stan Eisenhooth (1987-89), running back David Meggett (1989-1998), running back Tony Vinson (1994-97) and offensive tackle Jermon Bushrod (2007-present) are the only former Tigers to play in an NFL game. Landeta, Meggett and Bushrod have earned All-Pro honors.
West will also try to become the fifth Tiger to be selected in the NFL draft. Kicker Randy Bielski was chosen by Baltimore in the 12th round in 1980 while Meggett was selected in the fifth round in 1989. Vinson was a fifth round selection by San Diego in 1995. Bushrod was chosen by New Orleans in the fourth round in 2007.