Utah running back Tavion Thomas said Friday he will declare for the NFL draft, ending his career with the Utes.
The team's leading rusher, Thomas said he will rehab a toe injury he sustained in Utah's 20-17 loss last Saturday to Oregon but plans to return for the East-West Shrine Bowl on Feb. 2 in Las Vegas.
Utah concludes its regular season on Saturday at Colorado. At 8-3 (6-2 Pac-12), the Utes are eligible for a bowl game that Thomas won't appear in.
It wasn't too long before Thomas transferred to Utah that he was homeless as a result of "COVID and stuff back home," in Dayton, Ohio, he told the Deseret News last year. And he expressed how grateful he was to the Utah community on Twitter.
"I look forward to getting back and dominating in the Shrine Game," he wrote on Twitter on Friday. "Most importantly, I want to say thank you to every single person that embraced me here and gave me this opportunity that changed my life. I will never forget the moments and memories I have here and I will forever be a Ute."
Thomas played at Independence Community College and Cincinnati before transferring to Utah in 2021.
Last season, he was a first-team all-conference selection after carrying the ball 204 times for 1,108 yards and 21 touchdowns -- the latter tops in the Pac-12 and third among FBS players. He added 687 yards and seven touchdowns this season and played 23 total career games in a Utah uniform.
--Field Level Media