April 27, 2012
NEW YORK – Georgia Tech wide receiver Stephen Hill was selected in the second round of the 2012 NFL Draft Friday evening by the New York Jets.
Hill was the 11th player taken in the second round, the 43rd player selected overall. The Jets, who took North Carolina defensive end Quinton Coples in the first round, made Hill their first pick on the offensive side of the ball.
The Lithonia (Ga.) product, who left Tech following his junior season in 2011, was the sixth wide receiver taken in the draft. Four receivers were selected in the first round and Appalachian State WR Brian Quick was the first pick of the second round.
Hill was in attendance at the draft ceremony at Radio City Music Hall.
He could give Georgia Tech four wide receivers in the NFL, joining Detroit’s Calvin Johnson, Denver’s Demaryius Thomas and Atlanta’s Kevin Cone. Johnson and Thomas were first-round picks. Cone made the Falcons’ active roster down the stretch of the 2011 season.
Hill gives Georgia Tech six draft picks over the last three years combined and 13 selections over the last five years. Hill is the third Jacket receiver to be drafted since 2007. He is the 206th all-time draft pick from the Flats.
He caught 28 passes for 820 yards in 2011, helping the Yellow Jackets to an 8-5 record and their 15th consecutive bowl bid. Hill, who caught five touchdown passes including one against Utah in the Hyundai Sun Bowl, led all FBS players in yards per reception (29.3).
The 6-foot-5, 205-pound Hill was on the preseason watch list for the Biletnikoff Award. He was named the ACC Receiver of the Week on Sept. 6. Phil Steele’s publications named him third team All-ACC.
Prior to Hill, the last time the New York Jets drafted a Georgia Tech player came in 1993 when defensive tackle Coleman Rudolph was also taken in the second round. In 1984, the Jets drafted Ronny Cone in the 10th round. Cone is the father of the previously mentioned Kevin Cone, the former Jacket and current Atlanta Falcons WR.
Some of Hill’s on-the-field achievements:
— He finishes his three-year career with 1,248 receiving yards, which ranks 16th in Georgia Tech history.
— For his career, Hill averaged 25.47 yards per reception, which would have easily broken the school record, but he fell one reception short of qualifying for the record book (minimum 50 receptions).
— His nine career touchdown receptions rank 14th in Tech history.
— Hill had three career 100-yard receiving games with all three of those efforts coming in 2011.
— He had 820 yards this past season – the 13th-most single-season receiving yards in Tech history.
— Hill averaged 29.3 yards per reception in 2011, the highest average by any player in the FBS and the highest in school history, breaking the old record of 25.1 yards per reception by Demaryius Thomas in 2009.
— Hill owns three of the 24 longest receptions in Georgia Tech history, including an 82-yarder in 2011 against Western Carolina that ranks sixth all-time.