By Alex Byington
The Cove Herald
Robert Griffin III and his father rebuked reports Sunday by ESPN that the Heisman Trophy winner has already decided to go pro.
Earlier in the day, NFL insider Chris Mortensen reported on ESPN.com that the Baylor junior quarterback had all but made up his mind to declare for the 2012 NFL draft and forgo his final year of eligibility according to statements made by his father, Robert Jr. of Copperas Cove.
But the retired Army sergeant clarified himself Sunday evening in a text to the Daily Herald.
"(The reports are) not true. He (has) not decided yet. He will on Jan. 10th. There is a process. When Robert comes back (from New Orleans) on Wednesday, it will begin."
Griffin III took to Facebook to debunk the speculation, posting "nor have I decided on my collegiate eligibility."
The Griffins are in New Orleans visiting relatives and don't plan to return to Texas until the middle of next week. Once home, Griffin III is expected to decide to return to Baylor for his senior season or enter the NFL, where he is expected to be among the top five players selected overall.
According to Mortensen's report, Griffin Jr. said: "I met with my son (Dec. 30) and his schedule is pretty much he will attend the Sugar Bowl here in New Orleans, then next weekend he will meet with five agents and select the right agent to represent him and plan a good pre-draft process.
"After that he will sit down with three of his coaches at Baylor on Wednesday or Thursday (Jan. 11 or 12) and make it official."
Griffin III graduated with a bachelor's degree in political science in December 2010, and he is only a little more than a semester away from earning his master's degree in communications. He's also said he'd like to enter law school at some point.
"He actually has made a strong case to return because he's only 12 hours short of his master's, but he believes he can still accomplish that goal," Griffin Jr. told Mortensen. "He's still waiting for his official evaluation from the league, but the decision (to turn pro) is not a hard decision."
The deadline for collegiate underclassmen to declare for the NFL Draft is Jan. 15.
Griffin III capped an incredible 2011 season at Baylor by leading the Bears to a thrilling 67-56 victory over Washington in the Alamo Bowl on Dec. 29 - their first bowl win since 1992 - and a 10-3 record for the program's second-ever 10-win season (1980).
The first-team All-American quarterback finished his junior campaign with 4,293 passing yards, 37 touchdowns and an 189.5 percent efficiency rating, breaking the prior NCAA efficiency mark of 186.0 set by Hawaii's Colt Brennan in 2006, while also running for 699 yards and 10 more scores on the ground.