CBS Sports put out a list of the Top 20 draft eligible players who decided to return to school for 2020, and an Alabama player tops the list.
1. DeVonta Smith, Alabama, WR: With Jerry Jeudy and Henry Ruggs III gone, Smith becomes the alpha in the wide receiver room for 2020. It could be Mac Jones or Bryce Young, but no matter who starts at quarterback we should expect Smith to lead the team in most major receiving categories.
Travis Etienne of Clemson is second on the list, which will likely cause some debate and consternation. In all, three Alabama players made it, with Najee Harris coming in at #4, which is probably about right and Alex Leatherwood #19, which seems too low. Smith will be on the short list for the Biletnikoff award next year.
This is where, in typical entitled Alabama fan fashion, I’m going to complain about the guy who didn’t make it. Dylan Moses was a consensus preseason All-American last year and projected first round pick who was reportedly given a second round grade coming off of a season that never started due to a devastating knee injury. He may well be the best returning player in the country next year as long as his recovery stays on schedule.
Even with Dylan left off, Alabama is the only school with three players on the list. Add in some other veterans in LaBryan Ray, Patrick Surtain II, Landon Dickerson and Deonte Brown, and the 2020 version of the Crimson Tide will have as much veteran leadership in every position group as we’ve seen in a few seasons. Hopefully it will pay off next January.