Isaiah Buggs was a critical, and often underrated, pull for Nick Saban and company in the historic 2017 class. The top JUCO lineman in the nation, he immediately carved out an important role on a woefully thin defensive front that was reeling from the losses of Jonathan Allen and Dalvin Tomlinson to the NFL. By the middle of the season, Buggs was starting at defensive end on a national championship squad, and it’s fair to wonder whether the Tide would have that title without him. As a senior, he became the most vocal leader of the defensive line and tallied 9.5 sacks.
It was a long journey to get there. Coming out of high school with plenty of talent but not enough credits to qualify for FBS competition, Buggs left home in Ruston, LA to start his career at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College. He performed well, graduated on schedule, and became the center of a fierce recruiting battle between his home state LSU Tigers and Alabama. Because many of them are trashy like that, he received threats from the critters in Red Stick leading up to the Alabama-LSU tilt at Bryant-Denny Stadium in 2017. Winning that one handily and then shutting them out in their house as a senior had to be satisfying for him.
The 6’4”, 292 lb. Buggs is going to hear his name called by the middle rounds of the upcoming NFL Draft, but he has talents outside of football. He was a standout basketball player in high school, and took to Twitter in the summer to show off some of those abilities.
Football Player/ Basketball Player pic.twitter.com/mc1GvnMPUE— Isaiah D. Buggs (@BigPooh_91) July 26, 2018
That is just unnatural for a man that size. Funniest part of that video is Mack Wilson, who knows full well that the ball is not getting passed on that possession.
Buggs also loves music, his room chock full of speakers and other various equipment. He boasts that he has never had a piano lesson, but you’d never know it by listening to him play.
God gave me so many talent and playing the piano is one of the many talents he blessed me with pic.twitter.com/kwNFLNc8ra— Isaiah D. Buggs (@BigPooh_91) February 9, 2016
Shortly after signing, Buggs serenaded Nick and Terry Saban at their home, and both came away impressed.
Congratulations to Isaiah on overcoming some initial adversity to writ his name in Crimson flame. Someone will have big shoes to fill next season, both on and off the field. May he have a long, healthy and prosperous NFL career followed by much success in what comes after that. Who knows? We might see him on TV tickling the ivories one day.
Best of luck, Mr. Buggs. You have earned it.