Quarterback B.J. Coleman of Chattanooga was selected by the Green Bay Packers in the seventh round of the National Football League Draft on Saturday. Coleman, who battled injuries his senior year but raised his stock with a marvelous performance in the East-West Shrine Game in January, was taken by the Packers with the 243rd pick
in the draft. A three-year starter, Coleman was a top 20 quarterback recruit out of high school, choosing Tennessee the summer before his senior year. After redshirting in 2007, he saw limited action in 2008 as the third-string reserve, going 4-for-8 (50.0 percent) for 21 yards and one interception over three games. Coleman decided to transfer to Chattanooga (Tenn.) before the 2009 season and won the starting quarterback job as a sophomore (11 starts), finishing 227-for-401 (56.6 percent) for 2,348 yards, 17 touchdowns and 9 interceptions. He had his most productive season in 2010 as a junior with 11 starts, going 215-for-382 (56.3 percent) for 2,996 yards, 26 touchdowns, 13 interceptions and four rushing scores, earning Second Team All-Southern honors.
Coleman battled a shoulder injury in 2011 as a senior and missed four games (seven starts), finishing 137-for-225 (60.9 percent) for 1,527 yards, nine touchdowns and nine interceptions. Coleman was a highly-regarded recruit out of the prep level and transferred to Chattanooga (where is father played football) after two years in Knoxville for the opportunity of more playing time.
DeAndre Pressley of Appalachian State University was not selected in the NFL Draft. Pressley, who was an All-America quarterback his junior year and finished third in the Walter Payton Award balloting, struggled last season. He eventually lost his starting quarterback job to Jamal Jackson after he suffered a hand injury. Upon his return, Pressley, displayed an unselfish attitude and his athletic talents as he played a variety of positions for the Mountaineers. He also returned a punt for a touchdiown in the Florida All-Star Game in January.
Coleman and wide receiver Brian Quick of the Mountaineers, the highest draft choice in ASU hisitory who was taken by the St. Louis Rams with the 33rd pick in the second round Friday night, were the only players chosen from the Southern Conference in the NFL Draft.
Photo Courtesy: B.J. Coleman, Chattanooga Athletics