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Minnesota Football: Cornerback Benjamin St.-Juste declares for the NFL Draft

The Gophers hope to send another defensive back to the NFL

Minnesota v Illinois Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Minnesota Golden Gophers starting cornerback Benjamin St.-Juste announced Sunday morning that he will forego his remaining college eligibility and declare for the 2021 NFL Draft.

St.-Juste originally signed with Michigan out of high school. He saw action as a true freshman, playing in 12 games for the Wolverines as primarily a special teams contributor, before missing all of 2018 with a nagging hamstring injury. The following spring, Michigan deemed St.-Juste “not medically cleared to play” and he opted instead to grad transfer with three years of immediate eligibility, having already earned a degree in 2.5 years.

In his first season at Minnesota, St.-Juste started nine games at cornerback, recording 45 total tackles and tying for the team lead with 10 pass break-ups. He started five games for the Gophers this season, missing the Iowa and Purdue games after testing positive for COVID-19. St.-Juste finished the season with 14 tackles and three pass break-ups.

Depending on whether seniors Coney Durr and Justus Harris opt to return, Minnesota could need to replace all three starters at their three cornerback positions next season.