UND FOOTBALL: Hardin signs with Denver Broncos
Greg Hardin didn’t hear his name called in the 2014 NFL Draft over the weekend.
In fact, UND’s All-American wide receiver found out about his professional future on social media.
Hardin signed with the AFC champion Denver Broncos shortly after the draft ended.
“Honestly, I didn’t know until I saw on Twitter five minutes ago,” Hardin said about 8 p.m. Saturday. “My agent was still on the phone with the Broncos when I saw the tweet.”
Hardin wasn’t surprised by the outcome Saturday as Denver was one of the handful of teams that was in contact with Hardin of late.
Hardin, 5-foot-11 and 177 pounds, plans to finish his final exams next week in Grand Forks before heading to Denver.
“I’m excited,” Hardin said. “You play your whole life hoping for the opportunity to play after college. Not everyone gets that opportunity. I’m thankful for everyone who helped me get where I am today.”
Hardin, of Bellevue, Neb., finished his career with 216 catches for 3,583 yards and 31 touchdowns. Hardin, who set the school’s all-time receiving yards record, was a two-time all-Big Sky performer.
Denver, led by quarterback Peyton Manning, went 13-3 during the 2013 season. The Broncos lost to Seattle in the Super Bowl.
Denver had the best passing offense in the NFL last season, but lost its second-leading receiver, Eric Decker, to the New York Jets in free agency. The Broncos also drafted one wide receiver in the second round, Indiana’s Cody Latimer.
Denver has been a bit of a landing spot for former UND players.
UND offensive lineman Chris Kuper is retiring after spending the last eight seasons with the Broncos. He was the team’s longest-tenured player when he retired after the Super Bowl.
Former UND tight end Chad Mustard also spent three seasons with the Broncos from 2006-08. Mustard, like Hardin, played high school football in Nebraska.