ESPN recently unveiled its college football preseason All-America team and the SEC is well-represented.
Five SEC players (two on offense, two on defense, one on special teams) were selected.
Alabama had two selections in Calvin Ridley (WR) and Minkah Fitzpatrick (SS). LSU also had two members in Derrius Guice (RB) and Arden Key (LB).
Auburn’s Daniel Carlson earned the nod at placekicker.
Here’s excerpts from what ESPN had to say about each SEC selection:
RB: Derrius Guice, LSU
Offensive coordinator Matt Canada will open up the field, a concept that Les Miles refused to bring to Baton Rouge. Once defenses have to respect the LSU passing game, Guice becomes much more dangerous.
WR: Calvin Ridley, Alabama
Hurts will depend on Ridley more this season — no other Tide receiver caught more than 14 passes in 2016. The bet here is that Hurts emerges as a better passer thanks to new coordinator Brian Daboll. Ridley is ready to help.
LB: Arden Key, LSU
The junior provided bona fides regarding his pass rushing last season with a school-record 12 sacks and 11 hurries. No one else on the defense had more than 6.5 and five, respectively.
SS: Minkah Fitzpatrick, Alabama
This is how good the 6-1, 202-pound junior from New Jersey is. He started 10 games as a nickel as a true freshman for the most demanding defensive back coach in the game: Nick Saban. He started eight games there last year, moved to strong safety for the last seven, and dominated at both positions.
PK: Daniel Carlson, Auburn
Carlson has been especially valuable as the Tigers’ offense has struggled during his career. Against the last three FBS opponents last season — Georgia, No. 1 Alabama and No. 7 Oklahoma — Auburn gained a total of 378 yards and Carlson kicked six field goals.
Florida State, which has two defensive selections (CB Tarvarus McFadden and FS Derwin James) will face Alabama on Sept. 2 from the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, GA.
The post Five SEC players selected to ESPN’s college football preseason All-America team appeared first on SEC Country.
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