Nevin Lawson drafted by the Detroit Lions in fourth round of 2014 NFL draft

Utah State's Nevin Lawson, center, is lifted by teammates after intercepting a pass against San Jose State during the second half of an NCAA college football game on Friday, Sept. 27, 2013, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

LOGAN, Utah – Utah State All-American defensive back Nevin Lawson became the second Aggie picked in the 2014 NFL draft as he was selected in the fourth round by the Detroit Lions with the 133rd pick.

With its two NFL Draft picks in 2014, Utah State has now had eight players selected in the past four years, including four defensive backs.

Lawson joins USU all-Mountain West safety Maurice Alexander who was also taken in the fourth round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the St. Louis Rams with the 110th overall pick. All-time, Utah State has now had 118 players selected in the NFL Draft.

Lawson is the ninth Aggie ever to be drafted by the Lions organization joining tackle Howie Hansen (11/105) in 1945, end Ralph Maughan (18/156) in 1947, tackle Moroni Schwab (7/53) in 1948, tackle Dale Panter (14/132) in 1949, end Charley Hatch (30/359) in 1955, running back Altie Taylor (2/34) in 1969, quarterback Eric Hipple (4/85) in 1980, and defensive back Henry Henderson (10/251) in 1980.

Lawson will join 10 other former Aggies who are currently on NFL rosters, including Alexander, defensive back Jarrett Bush who is with the Green Bay Packers, defensive back Will Davis who is with the Miami Dolphins, wide receiver Chuck Jacobs who is with the San Francisco 49ers, defensive back Curtis Marsh who is with the Philadelphia Eagles, offensive tackle Donald Penn who is with the Oakland Raiders, running back Michael Smith who is with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, running back Robert Turbin and linebacker Bobby Wagner who are both with the Seattle Seahawks, and running back Kerwynn Williams who is with the San Diego Chargers.

Lawson, a 5-10, 186-pounder from Lauderhill, Fla. (Piper HS) was named a third-team All-American by College Sports Madness and received first-team all-Mountain West honors following his senior season.

During the 2013 season, Lawson ranked third in the Mountain West and 25th in the nation in passes defended (1.21 pg), and tied for eighth in the conference and tied for 82nd in the nation in interceptions (0.29 pg). Lawson finished the year first on the team in passes defended (17) as he had 13 pass breakups and four interceptions, which ranked first and second on the team, respectively. Lawson was also tied for fifth on the team in total tackles with 57 (33-solo, 24-assist), and was sixth on the team with 5.0 tackles for loss.

As a senior, Lawson was named the Mountain West’s Defensive Player of the Week against both Boise State (10/12) and UNLV (11/9). Against the Broncos, he recorded a career-high two interceptions, returning one 65 yards for his first career touchdown, while adding a career-high five passes defended and tying his career-high with nine tackles. Against the Rebels, he recorded four tackles, including one for loss on a fake field goal, to go along with two pass breakups and one interception in the end zone. Lawson, who also had a career-high five pass breakups against Hawai’i (11/2), concluded his season by recording four or more tackles in eight games, and had three games with multiple passes defended.

In all, Lawson was part of the winningest class in school history with 31 victories.

Utah State concluded the 2013 season with a 21-14 win against 24th-ranked Northern Illinois in the San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl to finish the year with a 9-5 record and tie the 1960 and 1961 teams for the second-most wins in school history. With its win against Northern Illinois, Utah State posted back-to-back bowl wins for the first time in school history as it played in its third-straight bowl game, also a first at USU.

Utah State, who finished the 2013 season by winning six of its final seven games, also set the school record for conference wins as it posted a 7-1 league mark in its first season in the Mountain West to win the Mountain Division of the conference and advance to the inaugural Mountain West Championship game.

Utah State ended the year ranking tied for 37th nationally in both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today Coaches’ polls with two votes each, marking the second time in as many years that USU has concluded the season ranked among the top teams in the nation as the 2012 team was ranked 16th in the final AP poll, 17th in the final coaches’ poll and 22nd in the final Bowl Championship Series (BCS) standings.

Fans can follow the Aggie football program at twitter.com/USUFootball or on Facebook at Utah State Football, as well as on Instagram at instagram.com/USUFootball. Aggie fans can also follow the Utah State athletic program at twitter.com/USUAthletics or on Facebook at Utah State University Athletics.

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