For the first time since 1971 and just the second time in program history, a trio of WKU Hilltoppers were selected in the NFL Draft.
Tight end Tyler Higbee became the highest offensive player ever drafted from WKU when he was selected with the 110th overall pick by the Los Angeles Rams in the fourth round on Saturday. Higbee, who missed five games as a senior due to an injury, finished with 38 receptions for 563 yards and eight touchdowns in 2015. One of the top pass-caching tight ends in the nation, the First Team Conference USA selection finished his Hilltopper career with 68 catches for 1,054 yards and 14 touchdowns.
Record setting quarterback Brandon Doughty was selected in the seventh round by his hometown Miami Dolphins with the 223rd overall pick. The first-ever WKU quarterback to be drafted, Doughty helped guide the Hilltoppers program to new heights. He broke every passing record in program history and holds 37 school records, including 17 career records, in helping WKU win the Conference USA title and climb into the AP Top 25, both firsts in the program's FBS era.
Defensive back Prince Iworah had his named called shortly following Doughty, when the San Francisco 49er's chose him with the 249th overall pick in the seventh round. A former walk-on, Iworah opened eyes with an impressive performance in the Collegiate All-Star game and at WKU's Pro Day. He became a two year starter and became one of Conference USA’s most disruptive defensive backs, finishing his senior season with 15 pass breakups, the fifth-most in a single-season in program history and the fourth-most in league play last season.
"Absolutely tremendous day for the Hilltoppers," third-year WKU head coach Jeff Brohm said via twitter. "Congratulations to all of our young men reaching their dreams today!"
In addition to those that were drafted, a number of Hilltoppers will also be headed to the league as undrafted free agents.
Wide receiver Jared Dangerfield has signed with New Orleans Saints, while fellow receiver Antwane Grant has inked with the Cincinnati Bengals. Signing with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers is defensive lineman Jontavious Morris, with former hoopster turned tight end George Fant heading to the Seattle Seahawks.
Linebacker Nick Holt received an invitation to Seattle's rookie camp.