STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - Penn State cornerback Justin King will skip his senior season and enter the NFL draft.

The announcement ended an agonizing decision process for the junior, his stepfather, Terry Smith, said last night.

"It was extremely difficult for him. Penn State is fond in Justin's heart and our family's heart," Smith, a former Nittany Lions receiver, said in a phone interview. "He felt it was just the right time."

King finished 2007 with 49 tackles and two interceptions.

He completed his degree in 3 years, because he academically enrolled at Penn State in the spring of 2005.

"I know he was torn back and forth, back and forth," defensive coordinator Tom Bradley said. "He's always going to be a Penn State guy. We're proud of him." *