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January 14, 2008

Florida State QB Lee declares for draft

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. Junior quarterback Xavier Lee has left Florida State and entered the NFL draft, the latest early departure for a program rocked by an academic scandal.

Lee was 2-4 in six starts during his Florida State career. He was suspended during the season for academic reasons and did not accompany the Seminoles to Nashville, Tenn., last month for their Music City Bowl loss to Kentucky.

The school said Monday that Lee had submitted paperwork to make himself available for the NFL draft in April.

Two of his junior classmates also chose that route: Linebacker Geno Hayes, the team's second-leading tackler, and Letroy Guion, one of the Seminoles' most talented interior defensive linemen.

Guion made 31 tackles in 12 games, including 6 1/2 for loss. His departure, along with senior Andre Fluellen, leaves the Seminoles without their two most experienced interior linemen going into the 2008 season.

Guion was among three dozen Seminoles players who missed the Dec. 31 loss to Kentucky for either being involved in a test-cheating scandal, poor grades, injury or violating team rules.

As a result of the scandal, more than a dozen players will be sidelined for the first three games of next season.

At 6-foot-4 and 235 pounds with a powerful throwing arm, Lee failed to reach the potential coaches and fans had hoped for during a three-year competition with Drew Weatherford.

The 22-year-old Lee completed 155 of 402 passes for 2,323 yards, 15 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. His best game came in a loss at Maryland in 2006 when he completed 22 of 36 passes for 286 yards and two TDs with no interceptions.

He replaced Weatherford in a scoreless game against Alabama on Sept. 29 to lead the Seminoles to a 21-14 victory, throwing for 224 yards and a pair of touchdowns.

Sophomore tight end Charlie Graham transferred to nearby Tallahassee Community College, where he hopes to graduate by August and later rejoin the team.

For more coverage of Florida State, visit Warchant.com.



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