Mike Weber will play his final game as a Buckeye in the Rose Bowl.
The redshirt junior running back announced Sunday night on Twitter that he will enter the 2019 NFL draft following Ohio State's season finale against Washington in Pasadena on Jan. 1.
— Mike Weber (@mikeweberjr) December 17, 2018
Weber is the second player still on the team to announce that he will enter the draft despite having another year of eligibility, joining redshirt junior defensive tackle Dre'Mont Jones, who announced his decision to enter the draft on Wednesday. Jones has also said he will play in the Rose Bowl.
Former Ohio State defensive end Nick Bosa is also declaring for the 2019 NFL draft, but he left the team in October to focus on his recovery from core muscle surgery.
Weber told reporters on Wednesday that he had not yet made up his mind on whether he would enter the NFL draft, saying he was "still thinking about it." At the time, Weber said he felt like his season was "okay" and "decent," but that he had not yet played up to his personal expectations.
"I know my potential, and I still haven’t reached it yet," Weber said Wednesday.
That said, Weber had already contemplated leaving for the NFL after last season. When he decided to return, he tweeted "One more year." So it's no big surprise that Weber has decided the time is now to take his game to the next level.
"It's been one Hell of a journey," Weber said in his Twitter post. "I will forgo my Senior Season and will live the dream I've had since 5 years old. I will be declaring for the 2019 NFL Draft. I also will be playing in the Rose Bowl to finish what My brothers and I started."
In three playing seasons for the Buckeyes, Weber has rushed for 2,580 yards and 24 touchdowns on 440 carries, while also catching 53 passes for 289 yards and one touchdown.
Weber, who was recently ranked as the ninth-best running back in the 2019 draft class by Bleacher Report's Matt Miller, is projected to be selected in the middle rounds of the draft.
J.K. Dobbins is in line to return as Ohio State's lead running back next season, but Weber's departure should open the door for redshirting freshmen Master Teague and Brian Snead and incoming freshmen Steele Chambers and Marcus Crowley to compete for the No. 2 spot on the running back depth chart next season. Current redshirt sophomore Demario McCall, who has played at running back for most of this season, could factor into the equation at either running back or H-back next season.