Chris Greenwood? From Albion? The one in Michigan, right? That’s a division III school! Perhaps this is how you or another Lions fan you know reacted to the Lions selection of Chris Greenwood in the fifth round of the 2012 NFL Draft.
Yes, one of the three cornerbacks the Detroit Lions drafted last month is a product of NCAA Division III football. While the jump from DIII to the NFL is rare, it isn’t as unprecedented as some might think, even as far as the Lions are concerned.
The Lions last drafted a DIII player in 1999 when they took University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point linebacker Clint Kriewaldt in the sixth round. Kriewaldt went on to become a solid special teams performer for the Lions and Pittsburgh Steelers and lasted nine years in the NFL.
|Year||Player, pos., school||Team||Round-overall|
|2012||Chris Greenwood, CB, Albion||Lions||5-148|
|2011||Cecil Shorts, WR, Mount Union||Jaguars||4-114|
|2008||Andy Studebaker, DE/LB, Wheaton (Ill.)||Eagles||6-203|
|2008||Pierre Garcon, WR, Mount Union||Colts||6-205|
|2007||Michael Allan, TE, Whitworth||Chiefs||7-231|
|2007||Derek Stanley, WR/RET, UW-Whitewater||Rams||7-249|
|2003||Ryan Hoag, WR, Gustavus Adolphus||Raiders||7-262|
|2002||Tony Beckham, CB, UW-Stout||Titans||4-115|
|2002||Michael Coleman, WR, Widener||Falcons||7-217|
|2000||Tim Watson, DE, Rowan||Seahawks||6-185|
|1999||Clint Kriewaldt, LB, UW-Stevens Point||Lions||6-177|
|1996||Ethan Brooks, OL, Williams||Falcons||7-229|
|1992||Nate Kirtman, DB, Pomona-Pitzer||Cowboys||9-248|
|1992||Barry Rose, WR, UW-Stevens Point||Bills||10-279|
|1991||Pete Lucas, OL, UW-Stevens Point||Falcons||10-258|
|1991||Larry Wanke, QB, John Carroll||Giants||12-334|
Other notable former Division III draftees prior to 1991 include Chris Warren (90th overall in 1990) and Pete Metzelaars (75th overall in 1982).