A few hours before midnight, No.19 Texas A&M football secured their first bowl win since 2014 after defeating North Carolina State in a 52-13 shutout on New Year’s Eve.
In all the excitement, Aggie fans and spectators began to wonder what this meant for players who are eligible for the upcoming 2019 NFL Draft.
One player was sure to stand out after declaring for the draft at 11:18 a.m. the next morning on New Year’s Day.
Junior tight end and transfer Jace Sternberger declared in a Twitter announcement that NC State would be his last opponent to play in an A&M uniform.
“Texas A&M has brought me in and treated me like family since day one,” the statement read. “Thank you to Coach Fisher for giving me the opportunity to play at such a tremendous school. I will forever be grateful for our relationship and all the lessons you have taught me.”
Sternberger transferred to A&M last spring after previously playing for Kansas University and Northeastern Oklahoma A&M. He said that although his start in college football was a long journey, he is proud that he ended in Aggieland.
“The past four years have been an incredible journey. I had four offers coming out of high school, went to Kansas University, then transferred to a junior college back home and the signed with Texas A&M and became an All-American. It’s been an honor and a blessing to represent Texas A&M University,” Sternberger said in the statement.
Sternberger was a valuable asset for the A&M offense--an offense that before 2018 didn’t utilize the tight end position. In his single season with the Aggies, Sternberger received 48 catches for a total of 832 yards and 10 touchdowns.
In his statement, Sternberger thanks his teammates for a year to remember.
“Thank you to my teammates for making this year so special,” Sternberger said. “I am thankful for the relationships I made. Thank you to my family and my friends for supporting me throughout the entire journey.”
Thank you. 👍🏻 pic.twitter.com/DuNi02myxC— Jace Sternberger (@_Jstern) January 1, 2019
The 2019 NFL Draft will take place on Thursday, April 25 and go till Saturday, April 27 in Nashville, Tenn.