Wide receivers and cornerbacks tend to remember the best players they have faced in one-on-one matchups, which makes for a popular question at the annual NFL Scouting Combine. Many players name a memorable opponent in their answer. John Metchie, though, says the best corner he faced in college was on his own team. Metchie gave the nod to former Alabama teammate Pat Surtain II.

It’s hard to argue with Metchie’s choice of Surtain, who was SEC Defensive Player of the Year and a Unanimous All-American in 2020 before being named to the Pro Football Writers Association (PFWA) All-Rookie Team for the 2021 NFL season.

Nick Saban will appreciate Metchie’s comments. The Alabama coach has cited Crimson Tide practices as preparation for the NFL in his pitch to recruits:

“Marlon Humphrey will say you if you play corner – the first corner taken in the NFL draft – he can say, ‘I had to cover Amari Cooper every day.’ Amari Cooper was the first receiver taken in the draft. Cam Robinson played left tackle here and won the Outland Trophy. Jonathan Allen played for Washington and he won the Nagurski Award. They practiced against each other every day for three years. All those guys will tell you ‘that made me better … the guy I practiced against was better than the guy I played in the game against.'”