Ohio State safety Vonn Bell becomes the ninth Buckeye to declare early for the NFL Draft

With the departure of Bell, the Buckeyes are left with just six projected starters for the 2016 season. Bell marks the ninth and likely final Ohio State player from the 2015 squad to declare early for the draft.

For Ohio State, the number stands and will likely stay at nine early enrollees bolting for the NFL Draft as Vonn Bell announced his decision to leave in a release Tuesday evening. 

Bell, a two year starter who exploded onto the scene in the 2014 Orange Bowl as a freshman leaves Ohio State two years later as what some are calling the highest rated player at his position in the 2016 NFL Draft. 

“It has been an honor and a privilege to play at the best university in the country, to play for the best coach in the country, and to help bring the 2014 national championship to The Ohio State University and the best fans in the country,” Bell said in a press release. “My time here has been very special to me and my family. And I thank all Buckeye fans for their love and support.”

Bell was an Associated Press All-American in his final season in Columbus and ranked fifth on the team in tackles with 65 to go along with two interceptions. 

During Ohio State’s national title run in 2014, Bell totaled 92 tackles and six interceptions which ranked ninth nationally. 

With Bell’s departure, the Buckeyes are left with just six projected returning starters in 2016, including quarterback J.T. Barrett and Pat Elflein who is set to return for a fifth and final season in Columbus. 

Bell joins the likes of Joey Bosa, Ezekiel Elliott, Cardale Jones, Darron Lee, Tyvis Powell, Eli Apple, Jalin Marshall and Michael Thomas as Buckeyes to leave early for the upcoming draft. 

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