SEC makes history in NFL Draft

BY RAY VAN COR

The Greenville Standard

 

We finally had some college football related TV last Thursday night when ESPN hosted the NFL’s 2020 Draft.

The coronavirus threat made a normal outing out of the question. This year’s venue was to be held at the Raider’s new facility in Las Vegas Nevada and was featured to be packed with thousands of crazed fans.

However, COVID-19 squashed that. Commissioner Roger Goodell stood all alone, I’m sure in some small studio, but general managers, head coaches, potential first round players, commentators and serious fans were skyped in from their living rooms and team head quarters via computers.

ESPN did the very best they could to make things interesting for three and a half hours.

The South East Conference (SEC) is used to making history especially when it was the first conference to go independent for television dollars and for having a conference championship game during the BCS era.

The SEC normally dominates the first round selections but this year 15 SEC players were chosen in the first round which broke the previous record by three formally held by the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) which stood since 2006.

The SEC had tied the previous record twice in 2013 and 2017. This year LSU carried the crown with five chosen in the first round including number one overall quarterback and Ohio State transfer Joe Burrow.

Alabama had four chosen and Auburn had two after the first round was finished.

There was one player on everybody’s mock draft boards that was a sure fire slam dunk to be selected in the  first round, including mine, that did not make it.

I’m still shaking my head over this because Xavier McKinney cornerback of Alabama should’ve been snagged in the early teens, but what do I know?

Fortunately the New York Giants snagged him at 36 Saturday along with Marlon Davidson, defensive tackle at Auburn, at #47, and Trevon Diggs, cornerback at Alabama, at #51.

Both standout Linebackers at Alabama, T. Lewis and Anthony Jennings were taken in the third round.

A head shaker if there ever was one. Again, what do I know? Anyway, this is how the first round of the draft shook out for Auburn and Alabama.

  1. Tua Tagovailoa, QB Alabama -Miami Dolphins
  2. Derrick Brown, DT Auburn Carolina Panthers
  3. Jedrick Wills Jr. OT Alabama – Cleveland Browns
  4. Henry Ruggs III WR Alabama – Las Vegas Raiders
  5. Jerry Judy WR Alabama – Denver Broncos
  6. Noah Igbinoghene CB Auburn – Miami Dolphins

Former Alabama quarter back Jalen Hurts, who transferred to Oklahoma, was selected in the second round as the 21st pick by The Philadelphia Eagles.

 

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