The decision by USC defensive tackle Manuel Wright to leave school and apply for the NFL supplemental draft was prompted by the realization he simply wasn't making the grade.
In a last-ditch effort to get his academics in order, Wright skipped out on spring practice to focus solely on his studies. But apparently it was too little, too late.
Wright, who had 23 tackles, including six for loss, as a reserve last fall, realized the next full year would be spent off the gridiron and in the classroom, fighting what would have been an uphill battle in pursuit of academic reinstatement for the 2006 college season. Once that harsh reality set in, he quickly began searching for alternatives.
Wright, who is three years removed from high school, was advised that a supplemental NFL draft was his best option, and he jumped all over it.
Wright reportedly has retained agents Peter Schaffer and Lamont Smith of Denver-based All Pro Sports & Entertainment as his representation, making him ineligible to return to the collegiate ranks. Wright now is awaiting a response from the NFL office in regard to his application, which is expected to be accepted. If that's the case, Wright has plans for a crash-course training session in Denver in preparation for what likely will be a one-time, all-access workout for any interested NFL team.