Hawkeyes’ Geno Stone declares for NFL Draft

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IOWA CITY, IOWA- NOVEMBER 16: Defensive back Geno Stone #9 of the Iowa Hawkeyes makes a tackle during the second half on wide receiver Tyler Johnson #6 of the Minnesota Gophers on November 16, 2019 at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City, Iowa. (Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images)

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Iowa safety Geno Stone on Monday became the first — but surely not the last — Hawkeyes football player to declare early for the 2020 NFL Draft.

“After serious discussion with my family, confidantes and coaches (and a lot of prayers), I have decided to declare for the 2020 NFL Draft!” Stone said in a post to Twitter, along with a “Thank you Hawkeye Nation!”

Here is his full announcement:

Immediately after Iowa’s 49-24 Holiday Bowl win over USC, Stone said the decision was an “emotional” one, but the more he talked about it, the more his intentions seemed clearer — or at least which way he was leaning.

Stone recorded 70 tackles — 46 solo — and one interception this season after recording 39 (29 solo) last year with 4 INTs last year, including one for a touchdown.

Stone was named to the All-Big Ten second team by conference coaches.

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