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January 31, 2010

Bayless leaving NU

Wide receiver Martin Bayless, once thought to be the jewel of the 2008 recruiting class, is transferring from Northwestern.

"Martin has asked for his release and I have granted it," head coach Pat Fitzgerald said via email.

The 6-foot-2, 205-pounder from Fresno (Texas) Hightower never saw any action in two years with the Wildcat program. He redshirted his freshman season in 2008 and did not play in any games in 2009.

Bayless was only rated a two-star prospect by Rivals in 2008, but his offer list was as impressive as any recruit in recent Northwestern history. He held written offers from Ohio State, Florida, California, UCLA and Washington when he committed to the Wildcats.

Those powerhouse offers, plus NFL bloodlines, led many to speculate that Bayless would be an impact player at Northwestern. His father, Martin Bayless Sr., played 13 years in the NFL for five different teams, two of his uncles played in the NFL, and his cousin is former Heisman Trophy winner and current NFL defensive player of the year Charles Woodson.

But the only impact Bayless made en Evanston was limited to the practice field: he was named practice player of the week one time in 2008.



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