SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Jimmy Clausen has thrown his last pass at Notre Dame.
Clausen told ESPN.com on Monday that he is skipping his senior season to enter the NFL draft. He said made his decision after talking Friday with fired coach Charlie Weis and with his parents.
"Coach Weis told me whether he was going to be here or not be here, it was time for me to go. He thought I've improved so much since I came to Notre Dame. So, I'm taking his advice, and I'm going to head out," Clausen told ESPN.com.
Clausen's father, Jim Sr., declined comment when reached by The Associated Press. The school scheduled a Monday afternoon news conference where Clausen was expected to discuss his decision. Receiver Golden Tate also was expected to announce whether he will be back for his senior year.
Following Weis' firing on Nov. 30, Tate said Clausen's decision would be a factor in what he does. "What Jimmy does is very important on my decision," he said.
Clausen, who is from Westlake Village, Calif., arrived at Notre Dame in 2007 as the most-hyped Notre Dame quarterback since Ron Powlus arrived in 1993. Clausen announced his decision at an event at the College Football Hall of Fame, arriving in a Hummer limo, flashing three rings he won playing high school football and said he was coming to Notre Dame "to try to get four national championship rings."
He leaves without bringing the Irish to a single Bowl Championship Series game. The only bowl game the Irish went to in his three years as a starter was the Hawaii Bowl last season, a 49-21 victory over Hawaii that ended Notre Dame's NCAA-record bowl losing steak at nine.
He started 34 games for the Irish, posting a 16-18 record. He finished this season ranked second in the country in pass efficiency behind Boise State's Kellen Moore. Clausen was 289-of-425 passing for 3,722 yards and 28 touchdowns this year with four interceptions. He averaged 310 yards a game passing.
No one would have expected Tate to even consider leaving early during his freshman season. He could hardly get on the field because he was a tailback in high school and needed to learn how to run pass routes. He only had six catches for 131 yards that season.
He began showing progress last season, leading the Irish in all-purpose yards with 1,754. He caught 58 passes for 1,080 yards, an average of 18.9 yards a catch. But he flourished this past season, becoming a more complete receiver and repeatedly making highlight-reel catches.
Some talked about Tate being a possible Heisman candidate until the Irish lost their last four games.
The 5-11, 195-pound junior from Hendersonville, Tenn., had 93 catches for 1,496 yards with 15 receiving TDs and two rushing TDs and a punt return for a touchdown. He finished third in the nation in receiving yards per game (124.67) and seventh catches per game (7.75).