Vilardo: 2021 Pac-12 NFL Draft Capsules

Each Conference program's pro football draft history at a glance

Posted on April 29, 2021

Stephen Vilardo
  By Stephen Vilardo, SportsPac12

In anticipation of Today’s 2021 NFL Draft in Cleveland, here are summary capsules for each Pac-12 program.

They include the number of players drafted all time, Pac-12 Era picks, the highest pick, the most recent First Rounder, the number of players taken in 2020, all-time First-Rounders, and First Rounders in the Pac-12 Era.


Arizona Wildcats
Arizona’s Antoine Cason | Arizona Athletics
Players Drafted All-Time:182
Pac-12 Era Draft Picks:10
Highest Pick:Ricky Huntly, 7th overall, 1984, Cincinnati
Most Recent First-Rounder:Antoine Cason, 27th overall, 2008, San Diego
Drafted in 2020:0
All-Time First Rounders:11
First Rounders in Pac-12 Era:0

Arizona did not have a player drafted in 2020. The Wildcats have not gone two straight years without a draftee since 2004 and 2005. The last Arizona player selected in rounds 1,2 or 3 was Nick Foles in the Third Round in 2012.


Arizona State Sun Devils
Arizona State’s Brandon Aiyuk | Douglas Stringer/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
Players Drafted All-Time:249
Pac-12 Era Draft Picks:19
Highest Pick:Charley Taylor, 3rd overall, 1964, Washington
Most Recent First-Rounder:Brandon Aiyuk, 2020 25th pick, San Francisco
Drafted in 2020:2
All-Time First Rounders:26
First Rounders in Pac-12 Era:3

Arizona State has had at least one player selected in every draft since 2014, and at least two players in each of those except in 2017, when Zane Gonzalez was the only player selected. Since 1961, 2013 is the only year the Sun Devils have failed to have a player selected.


California Golden Bears
Cal’s Jared Goff | Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
Players Drafted All-Time:240
Pac-12 Era Draft Picks:24
Highest Pick:—Both 1st Overall—
Steve Bartkowski, 1957, Atlanta
Jared Goff, 1st overall, 2016, LA Rams
Most Recent First-Rounder:Jared Goff, 2016
Drafted in 2020:3
All-Time First Rounders:27
First Rounders in Pac-12 Era:1

The last five players drafted from Cal have all played on the defensive side of the ball, since 2018. This came after all seven of the Bears draftees were offensive players in 2016 and 2017. In the Pac-12 era Cal has had 11 defensive players and 12 offensive players selected (also one punter). 


Colorado Buffaloes
Colorado’s Nate Solder | Colorado Athletics
Players Drafted All-Time:275
Pac-12 Era Draft Picks:14
Highest Pick:Bo Matthews, 2nd overall, 1974, San Diego Chargers
Most Recent First-Rounder:Nate Solder, 17th overall, 2011, New England
Jimmy Smith, 27th overall, 2011, Baltimore
Drafted in 2020:3
All-Time First Rounders:24
First Rounders in Pac-12 Era:0

The Buffs have had nine players selected in the last four NFL Drafts. While Colorado has not seen a player go in the first round since joining the Pac-12, the Buffs have produced four Second Rounders and two third rounders since 2012. 


Oregon Ducks
Oregon’s Justin Herbert | Oregon Athletics
Players Drafted All-Time:225
Pac-12 Era Draft Picks:31
Highest Pick:George Shaw, 1st overall, 1955, Baltimore
Most Recent First-Rounder:Penei Sewell, 7th overall, 2021, Detroit Lions
Drafted in 2021:1
All-Time First Rounders:19
First Rounders in Pac-12 Era:7

2017 is the only year since 1985 that the Ducks have failed to produce a draft choice. In the last two years, Oregon has had eight players selected with four coming from the offensive side of the ball and four on defense. Nine of UO’s 18 first round picks have been since 2002.


Oregon State Beavers
Oregon State’s Brandin Cooks | Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports
Players Drafted All-Time:165
Pac-12 Era Draft Picks:16
Highest Pick:Terry Baker, 1st overall, 1963, LA Rams
Most Recent First-Rounder:Brandin Cooks, 20th overall, 2014, New Orleans
Drafted in 2020:3
All-Time First Rounders:6
First Rounders in Pac-12 Era:1

Last year was the third time since 2009 the Beavers have had at least three players selected in a draft. Five of the last six Beavers selected have been offensive players. Since 2009 only two Beavers have been selected in the opening two rounds of the draft.


Stanford Cardinal
Stanford’s Solomon Thomas | Stanford Athletics
Players Drafted All-Time:267
Pac-12 Era Draft Picks:37
Highest Pick:—All 1st Overall—
Bobby Garrett, 1954, Cleveland
Jim Plunkett, 1971, New England
John Elway, 1983, Baltimore
Andrew Luck, 2012, Indianapolis
Most Recent First-Rounder:Solomon Thomas, 3rd overall, San Francisco
Christian McCaffrey, 8th overall, 2017, Carolina
Drafted in 2020:2
All-Time First Rounders:25
First Rounders in Pac-12 Era:6

Stanford has had at least two players selected in every draft since 2010. 2009 and 2008 are the only years since the calendar turned to 2000 that the Cardinal have not had a player selected. 


UCLA Bruins
UCLA’s Takkarist McKinley | Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Players Drafted All-Time:325
Pac-12 Era Draft Picks:34
Highest Pick:Troy Aikman, 1st overall, 1989, Dallas
Most Recent First-Rounder:Takkarist McKinley, 26th overall, 2017, Atlanta
Drafted in 2020:3
All-Time First Rounders:35
First Rounders in Pac-12 Era:6

The last time UCLA did not produce a draft selection was in 2012. The Bruins have seen at least three players selected in every draft since 2012 with the lone exception being in 2019, when Caleb Wilson was the only player drafted. UCLA has had at least one player drafted every year since 1998 except for 2012 and 2009. 


usc logoUSC Trojans
USC’s Austin Jackson | Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire-AP
Players Drafted All-Time:512
Pac-12 Era Draft Picks:36
Highest Pick:—All 1st Overall—
Ron Yary, 1968, Minnesota
O.J. Simpson, 1969, Buffalo
Ricky Bell, 1977, Tampa Bay
Keyshawn Johnson, 1996, NY Jets
Carson Palmer, 2003, Cincinnati
Most Recent First-Rounder:Alijah Vera-Tucker, 14th, 2021, NY Jets
Drafted in 2021:1
All-Time First Rounders:83
First Rounders in Pac-12 Era:8

The last time USC did not have a player selected in 1938. At least one Trojan has been selected in every NFL Draft except 1938 and the first draft in 1936. In addition to 1936 and 1938, the only time USC failed to have at least two players selected was 1937 and 1998.


Utah Utes
Utah’s Garett Bolles | Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports
Players Drafted All-Time:168
Pac-12 Era Draft Picks:32
Highest Pick:Alex Smith, 1st overall, 2005, San Francisco
Most Recent First-Rounder:Garett Bolles, 20th, 2017, Denver
Drafted in 2020:7
All-Time First Rounders:8
First Rounders in Pac-12 Era:2

Twenty-one Utes have been selected in the last four NFL Drafts. Thirteen of the last 32 Utah players drafted have been taken in the first three rounds of the draft. The last time Utah did not have a player selected was in 2008.


Washington Huskies
Washington’s Kaleb McGary | M. Samek, 247Sports
Players Drafted All-Time:308
Pac-12 Era Draft Picks:32
Highest Pick:Steve Emtman, 1st overall, 1992, Indianapolis
Most Recent First-Rounder:Joe Tryon, 32, 2021, Buccaneers
Drafted in 2021:1
All-Time First Rounders:27
First Rounders in Pac-12 Era:8

Washington has had at least two players drafted in each of the last seven drafts, and the Huskies have seen at least one player selected every year since 2010. Since 1962, the only seasons the Huskies have not had a player selected was in 2003, 2008 and 2009.


Washington State Cougars
Washington State’s Andre Dillard | David Zalubowski / AP
Players Drafted All-Time:195
Pac-12 Era Draft Picks:12
Highest Pick:—Both 2nd Overall—
Ed Goddard, 1937, Brooklyn
Ryan Leaf, 1998, San Diego
Most Recent First-Rounder:Andre Dillard, 22nd, 2019, Philadelphia
Drafted in 2020:1
All-Time First Rounders:13
First Rounders in Pac-12 Era:2

WSU has had at least one player selected in each draft since 2013. Since 2000, 30 Cougars have heard their names called. Since the 1995 draft, WSU has had a player selected in every draft except for 2010 and 2012. The last three offensive players selected from WSU have all been drafted by teams from the AFC South.

Follow Stephen on Twitter @StephenVilardo and his organization @SERCenter. Visit his website at sercstats.com.




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