Beat writer Bob Asmussen’s take on Akeem Spence’s decision to declare for the NFL draft:
Illinois was never going to get a fifth year out of Akeem Spence. To some, it was a surprise that he stayed for his fourth season.
Spence made the same decision Corey Liuget (Chargers), Whitney Mercilus (Texans) and others have made before him: it’s time to get paid.
Spence is projected as the No. 10 defensive tackle in the 2013 draft, according to the always reliable Todd McShay. That should mean a decent draft slot, a nice bonus check and the chance to have a long career in the NFL.
But he will have to put in the work. He did it at Illinois, reshaping his body well enough to start the final three years of his career.