SDS is continually counting down the top 25 players in the SEC for 2012, and we’re not stopping until we get to that sexy No. 1. We don’t just rank stats or project players at the next level based on athletic superiority, but we rank players based on the season they had in 2012. I know you’ll agree with every single one…
No. 12 – Barrett Jones, OL, Alabama
Why he’s worthy: Barrett Jones leaves Alabama as one of the most decorated offensive linemen in the history of the SEC. He’s been the one versatile big ugly that Nick Saban and his staff could build around and count on at any position, as he played three different ones with ease in four years.
He began his college career playing right guard as a freshman, starting all 14 games and winning a national championship. Jones then moved to left tackle as a junior, where he won another championship protecting the blindside of new starter AJ McCarron. Finally, his move to center in 2012 cemented and furthered his legacy by winning another championship. He won the Outland Trophy in 2011, and he was a unanimous All-American in ‘11 and ‘12. He also nabbed the Campbell Trophy, which is the academic Heisman, and the Rimington Trophy as the best center in college football just this season.
Do you need anymore proof?
Players don’t just show up at college athletically good enough to just play any position on the offensive line. And it’s not just athletic gifts, either, as Jones carries a 4.0 GPA. He gets it, and he gets every position on the field.
Particularly this season, centers make all blocking calls at the line of scrimmage, and he handled it with ease in just his first year. His leadership, combined with his athletic versatility, makes Jones a can’t-miss prospect at the next level, as scouts know he excelled at three different positions.
The 6-5, 311-pound anchor was unmoved throughout 2012, marching Alabama’s dominant offensive line right into Miami and crushing the Irish. All he needed to do is put a little blood on his sock, and he would become a legend like Curt Schilling, because of his torn foot ligaments.
“I can’t remember a player that personally, academically and athletically who has ever contributed more than Barrett Jones,” Saban said about Jones. “If I were a CEO, I’d be trying to hire him. He actually makes me wonder sometimes as a coach who’s trying to set a good example for the players, shouldn’t I be more like him?”
What a pleasure it’s been to watch Jones handle his business with ease throughout his career.
- No. 13 Matt Elam
- No. 14 Cobi Hamilton
- No. 15 Chance Warmack
- No. 16 Jake Matthews
- No. 17 Jordan Matthews
- No. 18 CJ Mosley
- No. 19 Mike Gillislee
- No. 20 Cordarrelle Patterson
- No. 21 Chris Smith
- No. 22 Tyler Bray
- No. 23 Tyler Wilson
- No. 24 Johnthan Banks
- No. 25 Sam Montgomery
Photo Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE