Central Florida kicked off 2018 the way it spent all of 2017. Winning. But since New Year's Day, the Knights just can't stop losing.

Defensive back Mike Hughes announced via Twitter on Monday that he is skipping his final season of eligibility and entering the NFL draft.

Hughes is the third UCF player to announce he is forgoing eligibility to take a shot at the NFL. Receiver Tre'Quan Smith and tight end Jordan Akins announced they are leaving school early on Saturday.

Central Florida beat Auburn in the Peach Bowl on Jan. 1 to cap a perfect 13-0 season -- the lone unbeaten in the FBS this season. Before they even played the Tigers, however, the Knights suffered their greatest loss. Head coach Scott Frost had agreed to become the new head coach at Nebraska, his alma mater. Frost, however, did coach UCF in its bowl game.

As for Hughes, he was a Knight for just one season, having played at North Carolina as a freshman in 2015 then spending 2016 at Garden City Community College in Kansas. In his one season in Orlando, Hughes had plenty of impact.

He returned two kickoffs and one punt for touchdowns, earning second-team all-conference honors as a returner. In the secondary, Hughes made 44 tackles, led the team with 11 pass break-ups, and tied for the team lead with four interceptions. He returned one of those for a score, as well. That was good enough for first-team all-conference recognition as a cornerback.

--Field Level Media

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