Deone Bucannon's bank account will be on the receiving end of a very large wire transfer in the near future as the former Cougar safety inked his rookie contract with the Arizona Cardinals on Thursday.
His four-year deal is worth $7.7 million, including a $3.9 million signing bonus, according to Kent Somers of AZCentral. As a first-round pick, Bucannon's deal comes with a team option for a fifth year and roughly $6.2 million of the $7.7 million is guaranteed, according to NFL.com. NFL teams now produce video of everything, so you can actually watch Bucannon sign his deal.
"Money was never a big thing to me," Bucannon said, via the Cardinals website. "That's just the person I am. Honestly, I just want to play football, and my agent understands that, my family understands that. And (signing) kind of reflects it, being able to get the contract done so soon. It's just one less thing that's on the mind of my agent or my parents, because it really wasn't on my mind. I knew we were going to get it done sooner or later and I was going to play regardless."
Bucannon's contract is one of the richest deals signed by a WSU athlete in recent history. Brandon Gibson signed a three-year $9.78 million deal last offseason. Klay Thompson signed a four-year $9.74 million deal as a rookie, but is in line for a much bigger deal, possibly this offseason. He's entering the final year of his rookie deal and would be a restricted free agent after next season. At some point he's likely going to get a four-year extension worth upwards of $50 million.
Those three, and every other WSU athlete is still looking up at Drew Bledsoe who set the contract standard -- at least in terms of overall value -- when he signed a 10-year, $103 million deal.
Deone Bucannon Signs First Contract
Deone Bucannon has already spent several weeks with the Cardinals after getting drafted in the first round last month, and worked plenty on the practice field.
Pac-12 North college football offenses set to rebound in 2014 - ESPN
It wouldn't be surprising if all three of these teams added a touchdown to their points-per-game average in 2014. Washington State, however, looks like the most likely candidate to move up a class -- from decent to good -- in 2014.
In the battle to land top recruits, Washington State is starting to make up a little ground on its Pac-12 competitors.