Mark Vital, who helped lead the Baylor men's basketball team to a national championship earlier this year, has signed to the Seahawks practice squad as he tries to launch a professional career in a new sport.
Vital, who will play tight end for Seattle, has not played football since middle school, he told KPLC in Louisiana, but had workouts with some NFL teams this offseason. Vital, who is 6-foot-5, 250 pounds, was a third-team All-Big 12 selection in 2020 and a three-time Big 12 All-Defensive Team selection. He was also a two-time semifinalist for the Naismith Defensive Player of the Year award. After redshirting as a freshman, Vital played in 126 games over the next four seasons, starting 105, including Baylor's national championship game win over Gonzaga in which he scored six points and grabbed 11 rebounds.
Vital played for the Portland Trailblazers in the NBA Summer League after going undrafted in the NBA Draft, but he recently announced his plans to chase a football career instead of continuing with basketball.