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USC’s Darnold denies report he’d stay in school if Browns’ have No. 1 pick in draft

(AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

USC quarterback Sam Darnold denied a rumor that he might stay and play his junior season if the Cleveland Browns end up with the first pick in the 2018 NFL draft.

“I didn’t say anything about the Browns,” Darnold via ESPN. “I’ve never said anything bad about (an NFL) team. They know I would never say anything.”

Darnold’s draft availability has been the topic of speculation since earlier this month, when the Albert Breer of MMQB said during a radio interview that Darnold would wait to see if the Browns had the No. 1 pick before deciding whether to remain at Southern Cal or enter the draft.

Darnold would be one of the top quarterbacks available in the 2018 draft and has been widely projected as a high first-round draft pick.

Darnold, currently a redshirt sophomore, has passed for 3,462 yards and 24 touchdowns with 12 interceptions this season for the Trojans (10-2), who will play Stanford in the Pac-12 championship game Friday.

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