Canadian-born star Jevon Holland opts out of 2020 NCAA season, plans to declare for NFL Draft

Photo courtesy: Oregon Athletics

The Pac-12 may be returning to play this week, but one of its star players will not be taking the field.

Oregon Ducks safety Jevon Holland announced Saturday that he will be opting out of the 2020 NCAA football season, choosing instead to spend his time training for the 2021 NFL Draft.

The son of former CFL all-star defensive back Robert Holland, Jevon was born in Coquitlam, B.C. during his father’s stint with the Lions. He has become one of college football’s most prominent Canadian stars.

A consensus four-star recruit out of Bishop O’Dowd High School in California, Holland made an immediate impact as a true freshman by finishing second in the conference with five interceptions. In 2019, he was a semi-finalist for the Jim Thorpe Award as college football’s top defensive back and was an All-Pac-12 second team defender.

Jevon’s brother, Jamir Holland, went unselected in the 2019 CFL Draft but the younger brother will not lack for pro football suitors. Holland is a projected first-round NFL Draft pick and could potentially be the first safety off the board thanks to his ability to cover in the slot and his dynamic big-play production.

With COVID-19 still looming over college football and concerns within the Pac-12 that they are exposing players to injuries by ramping up to play so quickly, the true junior’s decision may prove to be a wise one to protect his body and draft stock.

J.C. Abbott is a University of British Columbia graduate and high school football coach. He covers the CFL, B.C. Lions, CFL Draft and the three-down league's Global initiative.