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Michigan's Lewan spurns chance at NFL, returning for final season as a Wolverine

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University of Michigan head coach Brady Hoke and player Taylor Lewan (77) head up the tunnel and off the field after defeating Notre Dame in September, 2011.

Blade/Andy Morrison Enlarge

ANN ARBOR -- Michigan offensive lineman Taylor Lewan announced tonight that he will return to the Wolverines for his final season of eligibility.

Projected as a first-round pick in the NFL Draft in April, Lewan spurned the chance to be a lock for the pros next season.

Lewan, a 6-foot-8, 308-pound redshirt junior, cited his loyalty to Michigan, as well as the opportunity to play a final season in Ann Arbor.

"Predictions are, to some extent, worthless," Lewan said.

Michigan coach Brady Hoke said he wasn't surprised by Lewan's decision.

"Offensive linemen here, they stay," Hoke said. "There's been a tradition of that."

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