Striking The Pose
By: Robert Craft
TheSouthernSportsEdition.com news services
It’s been 19 years since wide receiver Desmond Howard won the Heisman Trophy, but on Tuesday night DeVonta Smith ended the drought by earning the 2020 Heisman.
Smith joins running back Mark Ingram (2009) and Derrick Henry (2015).
Smith received the trophy after 12 games of SEC-only play and rewrote the Alabama and SEC record books. The Amite, LA native caught 105 passes for 1,641 yards and 20 touchdowns (all three led the nation).
Think about what it takes for a receiver to be recognized as the best player in the game. That player must dominate and make it known immediately and obvious that he’s more responsible for his team’s success than his quarterback.
Smith passed the test. He is the best offensive player on a team loaded with NFL talent at every position.
You could argue that Jones is the guy throwing the ball to Smith and deserves the credit, but Smith gets open play after play, no matter the coverages or routes.
Smith received 447 first place votes and 1,856 total points. Clemson and future Jacksonville quarterback Trevor Lawrence was second with 222 first place votes and 1,187 total.
Smith’s teammates Mac Jones and Najee Harris, finished third and fifth and Florida’s Kyle Trask finished fourth.
Smith already had an all-time highlight when, as a freshman, he ran by a Georgia defensive back to catch a Tua Tagovailoa’s 41-yard touchdown pass to win the College Football Playoff Championship.
He will have a chance to score another title Monday when Alabama faces Ohio State for the College Football Playoff Championship in Miami.
Former Heisman winner Steve Spurrier had these thought on DeVonta, “DeVonta, gosh I still remember when he was a true freshman when he caught the touchdown to beat Georgia for the national championship. Nobody knew who he was, he just flew down the sideline and obviously Georgia was in a bad coverage. Some kind of the Cover 2 on that side, which doesn’t make sense but that’s what they were doing.”
Nicknamed the “Slim Reaper,” Smith has already collected plenty of awards for his 2020 efforts, ranging from consensus All American to the Biletnikoff Award to AP College Football Player of the Year (first ever receiver to win), but the Heisman is a completely different class of Hardware.
Smith delivered an inspiring and heartfelt acceptance speech after winning, “To all the young kids out there that’s not the biggest, not the strongest: just keep pushing. I’m not the biggest. I’ve been doubted a lot because of my size and really, it just comes down to if you put your mind to it, you can do it. No job’s too big.”
The experts at SportLine.com have revealed the 2021 Heisman odds: Spencer Rattler QB, Oklahoma is the favorite followed by three ACC quarterbacks D. J. Uiagalelei, Clemson; Sam Howell, North Carolina and D’Eriq King, Miami.