Michigan All-America RB Blake Corum staying for senior year

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — Michigan All-America running back Blake Corum is staying in school for his senior season and putting his professional football dreams on hold.

“I can go to the NFL next year,” Corum told The Associated Press. “But I can’t go to the NFL, then come back to Michigan the next year.”

Corum announced his decision on Monday, hours before the national championship game, writing in a social media post that he had “unfinished business” on the field and in the classroom.

“I think a lot of people were surprised,” Corum said. “I personally couldn’t go out the way I did. Some people might remember me getting hurt at the Big House and that didn’t sit well with me.”

He had a season-ending left knee injury against Illinois on Nov. 19 after running for 1,463 yards and 18 touchdowns. Corum had 952 yards rushing and 11 touchdowns as a sophomore in 2021.

While Corum decided to stay, three teammates chose to go pro.

All-Big Ten defensive linemen Mazi Smith and Mike Morris, along with tight end Luke Schoonmaker, are entering the NFL draft, passing on the opportunity to play another season in college.

Without Corum in the lineup, the second-ranked Wolverines lost to third-ranked TCU on Dec. 31.

Michigan has won two straight Big Ten titles and lost two consecutive games in the College Football Playoff.

“We accomplished a lot, but we haven’t accomplished what we want,” Corum said. “I’m a Michigan man, who loves being at Michigan, and I’m going to give it one last run.”

Corum has and will continue to make money with name, image and likeness agreements and has said he gives away half of what he makes to Michigan offensive linemen and the community. He doesn’t plan to draw from a fund that has been established to give returning Wolverines money.

“That’s for my teammates who stay,” he said. “NIL deals didn’t factor into my decision to come back. I’m coming back to help Michigan get what we deserve and have been working toward and that’s a national championship.”

The 5-foot-8, 210-pound Corum, who is from Marshall, Virginia, will return along with quarterback J.J. McCarthy to lead Michigan with or without coach Jim Harbaugh. Harbaugh has drawn interests from NFL teams while the NCAA is looking into potential rules infractions in the Wolverines’ football program.

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AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/college-football and https://twitter.com/ap_top25

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