"These last four years have been a long journey," James tweeted on Dec. 17 when announcing he'd forgo his final season to enter the draft, "with twist and turns that have helped me grow and develop into a player ready to compete at the next level."
The 5-foot-9, 176-pounder from Sarasota, Fla., departed Middle Tennessee as the program's all-time leader in receptions, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns despite playing just 31 career games. He had 213 receptions for 2,971 yards and 20 touchdowns as a freshman (2015) and sophomore (2016) before missing eight games last year with injuries, including a season-ending broken collarbone suffered vs. Marshall on Oct. 20.
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James passed on his redshirt senior season to become one of more than 100 early entrants for the 2018 draft. He left campus after the Blue Raiders' win over Arkansas State in the Camellia Bowl and arrived in Texas in early January to begin training at APEC Fort Worth. He signed with an agent, Deryk Gilmore of Day 1 Sports and Entertainment, shortly thereafter and plans to remain in Fort Worth through the entire draft process.
Over the next three months, Richie James will give fans a unique look at the draft process with a Draft Diary series in which HERO Sports will chronicle each piece of his journey with periodic articles, quotes and more.