Cincinnati Bengals grab Miami Hurricanes cornerback DJ Ivey in seventh round

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After four years as a key Hurricanes cornerback, DJ Ivey is going pro.

Ivey was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals in the seventh round on Saturday following a successful five-year career at Miami.

“It’s been a long five years,” Ivey said at Miami’s Pro Day in March. “Just been a grind, honestly. Different coaches coming through, different people, different players you meet. It’s all about how you’re going to stay the course, stay focused and just grind it out, for the most part.”

Ivey is a Miami native, signing with the Hurricanes out of South Dade High in Homestead. Ivey was a four-star prospect and quickly got on the field at UM.

In his five seasons at Miami, Ivey played in 58 games, starting 32. He had 127 tackles, four tackles for loss, 17 pass deflections and six interceptions. In 2022, he had a career-high 38 tackles and a career-best seven pass deflections. He also had two interceptions.

Pro Football Focus gave Ivey some of the best grades of his career: a 76.2 coverage grade and a 75.2 overall defensive grade.

Ivey did not attend the NFL combine but did run a 4.46 40-yard dash at UM’s Pro Day, which helped him get consideration from NFL teams.

“Everyone’s dream is to get drafted into the NFL,” Ivey said. “But regardless of that ... I’m going to just make the best of my opportunity. That’s all I need is an opportunity.”

Ivey credited Miami for teaching him to become a better player and a better person off the field.

“They developed me on the field but not only on the field, off the field,” Ivey said. “Just knowing how to be a grown man, knowing how to be a gentleman, knowing how to be polite, going to class on time, making it to meetings on time. Those little things matter in the real world. Those little things helped me to get where I am today.”

Former Hurricanes cornerback Tyrique Stevenson, who the Chicago Bears drafted in the second round on Friday, said he has known his ex-teammate for more than 15 years. He thinks the Bengals are getting a good one.

“DJ is a helluva player, man,” Stevenson said. “He just was always smooth. Growing up with him — I met him in 2006 — so I just knew him my whole life. He’s always been that smooth player, that work-hard player. I know DJ worked hard to get to this day also. I know when a team gets him, they’re going to get an elite, smart corner. ... He’s not afraid of no challenges.