Former Rickards, Valdosta State star ready for next step in NFL

Published: May. 6, 2019 at 10:27 PM EDT
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By: Kevin Keane | WCTV Eyewitness Sports

May 6, 2019

VALDOSTA, Ga. (WCTV) -- As Valdosta State received their 2018 championship rings on Monday, so too did defensive back Stephen Denmark.

The Tallahassee native and former Rickards standout not only won a national title this past season, but he's now about to live his dream in the NFL. Denmark was taken in the seventh round of last weekend's NFL Draft and will be heading to the Chicago Bears.

Last season for VSU, he earned Second Team All-Gulf South Conference honors, racking up 55 tackles.

"It's still overwhelming, kind of, but it's definitely exciting," Denmark said at Monday's ring ceremony. "Just living out your childhood dreams and finally getting a ring. You've finally got something to celebrate for. I thought it was going to happen, I believe it's going to happen all the time, but as the rounds continued to go on, it did get a little frustrating. But, I just kept a positive mind and just went in it and whatever happens, happens."

Denmark is the fifth-ever Blazer to be drafted, along with Edmund Kugbila (2013, Carolina), Artie Ulmer (1997, Minnesota Vikings), Antonio Edwards (1993, Seattle Seahawks) and Robert Morris (1990, Seattle Seahawks).