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Sacramento State LB Marte Mapu Selected 76th Overall by New England Patriots in 2023 NFL Draft

Mapu became the first Hornet taken in the draft since 2004.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: JAN 28 NFLPA Collegiate Bowl Photo by Jordon Kelly/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

For the first time since 2004, a Sacramento State Hornet has heard his name called in the NFL Draft. On Friday night, linebacker Marte Mapu was selected by the New England Patriots in the third round (76th overall).

Mapu put together a stellar career at Sac State, finishing with 165 total tackles (13 for loss) and registered seven interceptions. He was last year’s Big Sky Conference Defensive Player of the Year and earned All-American honors.

He was the second FCS player selected in this year’s draft and is the second linebacker from the Big Sky to be taken dating back to last year when Atlanta took Montana State’s Troy Andersen. Mapu is the third FCS player that the Patriots have selected over the last two years, joining offensive lineman Cole Strange and running back Pierre Strong Jr.

Joining a linebacker room that has guys like Josh Uche and Matthew Judon should only help Mapu develop and he could be a potential starter withing a year or two.