PULLMAN – Former Washington State players Gabe Marks and Robert Barber were not selected during the NFL draft, but the Cougars will still be able to prove themselves to NFL teams.
Shortly after the draft finished, Barber agreed to terms with the Carolina Panthers and Marks’ representatives said that he had agreed to a free agent deal with the New York Jets. There he will join former California wide receiver Chad Hansen, who ranked No. 1 in the Pac-12 in 2016 with 9.2 receptions per game, one spot ahead of Marks, who ranked No. 2 with 6.8 catches per contest.
The Jets drafted Hansen in the fifth round and Alabama’s ArDarius Taylor, another wide receiver, in the third round.
Marks as arguably the most prolific receiver in Pac-12 history, finishing as the conference’s all-time leading receiver with 316 catches, second all-time in touchdown catches with 37 and seventh all-time in receiving yards with 3,453.
He famously returned to school for his senior season following a 15-touchdown junior campaign that led many to believe he would declare early for the NFL draft.
Barber had a tumultuos senior campaign that began with his arrest for fighting during an off-campus party, which led to his temporary expulsion. A court reinstated Barber, though he was formally charged with the assault in late February.
But the 6-foot-3, 305-pound Barber managed to return for the end of his senior year, making four tackles, including one for loss, in the Holiday Bowl.
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