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Trystan Colon-Castillo became the third Missouri football player in as many days to declare for the NFL Draft despite having one more year of college eligibility.

Colon-Castillo, the Tigers’ redshirt junior center, announced Tuesday that he would forgo his last season at MU and enter the 2020 draft. His declaration comes as more of a surprise than the two non-seniors to declare before him, Albert Okwuegbunam and Jordan Elliott. Okwuegbunam was a preseason All-American and one of the most prominent names in the country at tight end, and Elliott is the No. 44 draft prospect, according to Pro Football Focus.

All three have announced their decisions to leave Missouri in the aftermath of MU firing football coach Barry Odom. Colon-Castillo was one of Odom’s most outspoken supporters while his job security was under pressure throughout the 2019 season.

Colon-Castillo’s loss will be a tough blow for Missouri’s offensive line in 2020. He was named a third-team All-SEC center by Pro Football Focus this year and is the third 2019 starting offensive lineman who won’t return for the Tigers. Seniors Yasir Durant and Tre’Vour Wallace-Simms will also enter the draft.

Colon-Castillo did not respond to a message for comment from the Missourian.

“This is a team that came together,” Colon-Castillo said Friday when asked what he’ll remember about the 2019 Tigers. “The fans weren’t supporting us. The NCAA drops this bomb on us that we’re not going to be playing a bowl game. Every week, everybody’s talking about wanting the coaches to get fired. They’re talking about players need to get benched. Through all that, we stayed together and we worked and we grinded with each other every single day and put our hearts into it and played for each other.”

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