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Lions’ Parsons makes it official with opt out

From Mirror reports

Micah Parsons made it official Thursday.

Penn State’s All-American linebacker from Harrisburg confirmed to PennLive.com that he will sit out the 2020 season to prepare for the 2021 NFL Draft.

Parsons, who led the Nittany Lions in tackles for two straight seasons and is projected to be a high first-round pick, told PennLive.com that the decision was “the hardest I’ve ever had to make.”

Had the coronavirus not hit, Parsons said “100 percent” he would have played this season. However, the virus raised his concerns, including for his 2-year-old son.

Parsons said James Franklin, linebackers coach Brent Pry and former Nittany Lion standout LaVar Arrington, whom he considers a mentor, were included in his decision.

Parsons told PennLive that he and Pry had “multiple hard conversations,” but Pry supported his decision.

He called his discussions with Franklin “a back-and-forth battle. He told me why he thought I should stay, and he also told me he understands why I might leave.”

Franklin said Thursday night that he is “unbelievably proud of Micah,” and gave him his blessing.

“Micah and I have had many conversations about his NFL aspirations … he is now ready to pursue those opportunities,” he said. “I fully support Micah, his decision to opt out of the 2020 season, and declare for the 2021 NFL draft.”

Parsons admitted he leaves PSU with unfinished business.

“There was so much more I wanted to do,” he said. “As LaVar would say, ‘I was only at the doorstep.’ You see all these great PSU linebackers, and I was just getting there … And, I think this was the year that really hurts me (legacy wise) because I feel like this was the year. I wanted a national championship. I wanted a Big Ten championship.”

To come up short … it just really hurts not to be able to maximize your college career.”

Parsons said he’s on track to graduate in December with a degree in criminology.

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