Coleman Staying At Auburn

Auburn junior defensive end Antonio Coleman announced his decision on Saturday to return for his senior season.

Mobile, Ala.--At a ceremony on Saturday at Williamson High School, where Antonio Coleman was a standout for the Lions before heading to Auburn, the junior defensive end announced he is returning for his senior year.

"I am returning to Auburn University to play my last season in college football," Coleman said. "I have talked to Coach (Gene) Chizik and he's got a lot of ideas about what he's going to do at Auburn. I want to be a part of that."

Coleman is also serious about continuing his education. Already with a degree, Coleman said he plans to work on his Master's Degree at Auburn and added that's a big part of the reason he's coming back.

"It's so important," Coleman said. "You know the NFL stands for Not For Long. I've strived to get my books, that's the first thing I do. They gave me a scholarship to play football, but football isn't going to last forever. You've got to have a backup plan."

As a junior, Coleman made 46 tackles and led Auburn with six sacks and 10 ½ tackles for losses. He did all that despite being injured for most of the season with a sprained ankle. For his efforts Coleman earned First-Team All-SEC honors by both the coaches and the Associated Press.

Even more dominant as a sophomore, Coleman had a huge 2007 for the Tigers. In 13 games Coleman made 38 tackles, but had a team-high eight and a half sacks and 18 tackles for losses. Redshirting in 2005, Coleman played sparingly as a redshirt freshman in 2006 and finished with 18 tackles and six quarterback hurries.

Last week fellow defensive lineman and Mobile native Sen'Derrick Marks announced his intentions to enter the NFL Draft. The deadline for a player removing his name from the draft is Jan. 15.

We will have more on this story throughout the day.

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