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Two UCA players declare for NFL Draft

by Adam Cole | December 21, 2021 at 11:06 a.m.
FILE — Arkansas State quarterback Layne Hatcher (3) runs the ball while chased by Central Arkansas defensive end J.W. Jones (50) during the second quarter of the Red Wolves' 50-27 win on Saturday, Oct. 10, 2020, at Centennial Bank Stadium in Jonesboro. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/Thomas Metthe)

Two University of Central Arkansas players took to Twitter recently to announce they wouldn't be returning to the Bears in 2022, and instead make a push for the NFL by declaring for the 2022 draft.

Defensive lineman JW Jones and wide receiver Lujuan Winningham announced on Sunday and Monday, respectively, that they'd be declaring for this year's NFL Draft.

Although Winningham was a senior in 2021, he was eligible to return for another season at UCA because the NCAA allowed an extra year of eligibility due to the covid-19 pandemic, which was announced in April. Jones was one of nine seniors who returned for their extra year in 2021.

In five seasons, Jones had a career 107 tackles, 18.0 tackles for loss, and 10.5 sacks. Winningham totaled 2,194 receiving yards in four seasons for the Bears.

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