Woods not thinking about his NFL future

BY foxsports • October 24, 2012

LOS ANGELES - Matt Barkley and T.J. McDonald returned to USC for their senior seasons because they determined they had "Unfinished Business." Matt Kalil decided his business as a Trojan was finished and became the No. 4 pick in the 2012 NFL Draft.

When the time rolls around for Robert Woods to make his decision, there may not be any business left to finish, depending on how USC ends the 2012 season.

Woods set the bar pretty high for himself in 2011. By those standards, he's having a "down" year, yet he still put himself in a position to become USC's all-time leader in receptions when he passed Dwayne Jarrett last Saturday.

It took Woods 32 games to accomplish the feat, about two and a half seasons.

Entering the season, it was thought to be a no-brainer that Woods wouldn't return for his senior season.

If he decides to forego his senior year and enters the draft, it is believed Woods is a no-doubt first rounder. He's largely considered a top-flight route runner.

Stanford head coach David Shaw said Woods is "the best route runner" that he's seen in college football in the last 10 years.

Yet, Woods immediate concern is the team's upcoming meeting with Arizona. He's not thinking about the NFL at this time.

"Not at all," Woods said. "Right now, I'm focused on this year trying to make sure this year goes right. Still got a lot of games to play. I'm still, right now, playing for Matt and T.J. They came back for a reason so we're going to play for them."

Woods is incredibly close with his teammates, especially his roommates which include Dion Bailey, D.J. Morgan, Marqise Lee and Hayes Pullard. He insists he's having the time of his life.  

"I'm out here having fun," he said. "It's fun playing with teammates and the guys I got recruited with and I haven't even thought about it, like leaving them yet, but as of right now I'm playing with my brothers."

Whatever decision Woods makes, he likely won't be tugged one way or the other by Lee. 

"He (can) make his own decision," Lee said. "I don't necessarily get in people's ears about what they want to do. Same as Barkley. I didn't say anything to Barkley because I know he was going to decide what he wanted to decide. If he does stay, I'm happy."

Plenty of Trojans fans would join Lee in his happiness if Woods decides to return for his senior year. In the meantime, they'll have to enjoy being able to watch him in a USC uniform for the rest of this season.

As for the rest of the Trojans, they'll have to enjoy having him around as a teammate. As he watched Woods break Jarrett's record last Saturday, it further helped Morgan realize that.

"I'm just happy I could be a part of it and just be a part of his life, being his roommate since day one and being there supporting him," Morgan said. "You don't know what you're a part of until it's over. He might not come back, you never know."

At this point, neither does Woods.


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