Former Western Kentucky University defensive end Quanterus Smith was selected Saturday by the Denver Broncos with the 13th pick (146th overall) in the fifth round of the 2013 NFL draft.
Smith, a 6-foot-5, 250-pounder from Loganville, Ga., is the first WKU player drafted since the Cincinnati Bengals selected fullback Jeremi Johnson in the fourth round in 2003.
Smith had a breakout 2012 season, recording 12 1/2 sacks – including three against national champion Alabama – and finishing ranked first in the nation with 1.25 sacks per game. He finished just short of the Sun Belt Conference record for sacks in a season (13) and tied the league's career sacks record with 24.
The defensive end played in 10 of WKU's 13 games last season. He was suspended for the team's opener against Austin Peay for a violation of team rules and missed the final regular season game and bowl game because of a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee.
That injury prevented him from participating in WKU's Pro Day in March, but he graded as a 75.7 on NFL.com.
The NFL draft consists of seven rounds and concludes today.
Former WKU tight end Jack Doyle will also be hoping to hear his named called today. The Tops haven't had two players picked in the same draft since Joseph Jefferson and Mel Mitchell in 2002.