Former Butler wide receiver Michael Gallup had his name called on Friday evening, as the Dallas Cowboys selected the former Grizzly in the third round of the 2018 National Football League Draft.
Gallup, who palyed two seasons with the Grizzlies from 2014-15, was the 81st pick overall in the draft by Dallas and was one of a school-record seven players acquired by NFL teams this past weekend.
In addition to Gallup, who joins former Grizzly defensive lineman Demarcus Lawrence in Dallas, six former Butler football players have been signed as undrafted rookie free agents:
- LB Davon Durant (2013-14), Washington
- OL Tyler Howell (2013-14), New York Giants
- DL Ulric Jones (2013-14), Seattle
- S Afolabi Laguda (2014), Los Angeles Rams
- WR Byron Pringle (2015), Kansas City
- DL Mychealon Thomas (2014-15), New York Jets
Gallup becomes the 21st Grizzly selected in the NFL Draft and first since last year, when Chris Carson was taken by the Seattle Seahawks in the seventh round. Gallup is the fifth-highest NFL draft pick taken from Butler and sixth Grizzly taken in the third round or higher of the NFL Draft.
Gallup caught 44 receptions for 780 yards and 11 touchdowns as a freshman during the 2014 season at Butler, as he led the Jayhawk Conference for yards per catch and ranked second in touchdowns. He caught nine passes for 74 yards and one touchdown in four games in 2015, which was limited by an ankle injury. After Butler, Gallup played two seasons at Colorado State University, where he set a single-season school record for receptions (100) and ranked second with 1,431 receiving yards. During his time at CSU, Gallup finished fifth all-time in career receptions (176), sixth in career receiving yards (2,685) and tied for second in career receiving touchdowns (21).
Gallup earned numerous postseason honors during 2017, including being one of three finalists for the Biletnikoff Award, given annually to the nation's most outstanding receiver. He also was named a Consensus All-American, was a 2018 Senior Bowl selection, first-team All-America (Walter Camp, FWAA, Phil Steele, Pro Football Focus) and second-team All-American (Associated Press, AFCA, Sports Illustrated and USA Today). Gallup was also a two-time first-team All-Mountain West selections during his two seasons at Colorado State.
Signed as Undrafted Rookie Free Agents:
Davon Durant (2013-14) - In two seasons at linebacker with the Grizzlies, Durant played 12 games, posted 58 tackles with six sacks and two forced fumbles and a fumble recovery. As a sophomore, Durant played five games with 46 tackles, three sacks, a forced fumble and a fumble recovered. During his freshman season in 2013, he made 12 tackles, with three sacks and a forced fumble. Durant sat out the 2015 season at Marshall University after transferring Arizona State. He played two seasons for the Thundering Herd, including playing in all 13 games during his senior season.
Tyler Howell (2013-14) - Howell played two seasons at Butler in 2013-14, earning NJCAA All-American first-team honors during his sophomore season. In 2014, Howell was part of an offense that averaged 474.7 yards of total offense per game while scoring 45.3 points per game. The offensive line allowed just 18 sacks over 11 games and gained more than 5,000 yards of total offense with Howell as a member of the group. After a redshirt season at the University of Missouri, Howell was a two-year starter at left tackle for the Tigers.
Ulric Jones (2013-14) - Jones finished up his two-year career at Butler in 2014, as he received All-KJCCC honorable mention honors at defensive end. As a sophomore, he made 43 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks. During his Grizzly freshman season, Jones had 19 tackles with two tackles for loss. After Butler, Jones spent three seasons at the University of South Carolina, where he redshirted his first season with the Gamecocks. During his junior and senior seasons, Jones played in all 26 games and started nine on the defensive line.
Afolabi Laguda (2014) - Laguda, who was a two-year starter at free safety at the University of Colorado, was an All-KJCCC honorable mention selection as a freshman during an 8-3 season in 2014. Laguda was in on 46 tackles, 24 solo with three for losses, along with two passes broken up and a forced fumble. One of those pass deflections saved a touchdown at the goal line against Coffeyville.
Byron Pringle (2015) - Pringle played during the 2015 season at Butler, where he caught 28 receptions for 432 yards (15.4 yds/catch) and nine touchdowns while being selected to the All-KJCCC second team. He also had a 93-yard kickoff touchdown in a home game against Iowa Central. In two seasons at Kansas State University, Pringle was named All-Big 12 Honorable Mention as a wide receiver (2016) and a return specialist (2017) before foregoing his senior season by declaring for the NFL Draft.
Mychelaon Thomas (2014-15) - Thomas was a two-year player at Butler, as he earned All-KJCCC second team honors during his sophomore season with 39 tackles (11 solo), four sacks and 8.5 tackles for losses in 11 games. As a freshman at Butler, he finished with 21 tackles, 3.5 tackles for losses and 0.5 sacks. Nicknamed "Big Mych", Thomas played two seasons at Texas Tech, where he started all 13 games at nose tackle and finished second on the Red Raiders' interior defensive line with 41 tackles (25 solo) during his senior season.
Invited to NFL Minicamps:
Kobe McCrary (2014-15), Minnesota - McCrary, who played two seasons at the University of Minnesota, spent two seasons at Butler and rushed for 1,385 yards on 263 carries and 24 touchdowns. During his sophomore season in 2015, McCrary rushed 225 times for 1,190 yards and led the NJCAA with 22 touchdowns while earning second team All-KJCCC honors.
Garrison Wright (2013-15), Cleveland - Wright spent three seasons at Butler, including a redshirt season during his first year. As a sophomore, Wright was named to the All-KJCCC first team as he blocked for a Grizzly offense that rushed for 2,087 yards and 36 touchdowns and passed for 2,160 yards and 16 scores. During his freshman season at Butler, Wright helped pave the way for the offense to rush for 1,822 yards and 27 touchdowns and pass for 3,400 yards and 28 touchdowns. Following Butler, Wright was a two-year starter on the offensive line at the University of Minnesota.
With the addition of Gallup and six undrafted rookie free agents, Butler currently has 14 former players either on rosters or coaching in the National Football League.
- Cornellius "Tank" Carradine (2009-10), San Francisco 49ers
- Chris Carson (2013-14), Seattle Seahawks
- Demarcus "Tank" Lawrence (2011), Dallas Cowboys
- Dexter McDonald (2012), Oakland Raiders
- Ryan Schraeder (2009-10), Atlanta Falcons
- Press Taylor (2007-2008), Philadelphia Eagles (quarterbacks coach)
- Zac Taylor (2004), Los Angeles Rams (quarterbacks coach)