Alabama Football Places Record Eight Players on the AFCA Coaches’ All-America Team
Alabama capped the All-America season with a record eight players earning All-America honors from the American Football Coaches Association on Wednesday.
Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, wide receiver Jerry Jeudy, offensive lineman Jonah Williams, defensive lineman Quinnen Williams and defensive back Deionte Thompson were first team selections while tight end Irv Smith, defensive lineman Isaiah Buggs and linebacker Mack Wilson were second-team choices.
The eight Crimson Tide players chosen are the most for one school in a single season in the 74-year history of the AFCA Coaches All-America Team. The six first-team selections equals the previous high in that category for the AFCA team.
With the announcement of the AFCA team, two Alabama student-athletes – Jonah and Quinnen Willliams – have earned unanimous All-America status, while three other Tide players – Tagovailoa, Jeudy and Thompson – earned consensus All-America recognition.
Jonah Williams has now earned unanimous All-America honors by virtue of first-team accolades from the AFCA, The Sporting News (TSN), Football Writers Association of America (FWAA), Associated Press (AP) and Walter Camp. The junior was also the winner of the SEC’s Jacobs Blocking Trophy, which is presented annually to the league’s top offensive lineman.
Quinnen Williams also earned unanimous honors with his selection by the AFCA, TSN, FWAA, AP, and Walter Camp and was a First Team All-SEC honoree. The redshirt sophomore took home the Outland Trophy on Dec. 6, in recognition of his breakout season in his first year as a starter. Williams leads all Tide defensive linemen with 65 tackles and paces the team in tackles for loss with 17 (-81 yards).
Jeudy, who was honored with the Biletnikoff Award as the nation’s top receiver this season, earned consensus All-America honors via his first-team selection by the AFCA, TSN, AP and Walter Camp. The sophomore was a First Team All-SEC selection by both AP and the league coaches. He has caught 59 passes for a team-leading 1,103 yards and 12 touchdowns this season. His touchdown total ranks second in school history for a season and the yardage is third in UA single-season history.
Tagovailoa led UA to its 27th Southeastern Conference championship and fifth-straight College Football Playoff appearance in his first season as the Tide’s starting quarterback. His list of honors this season includes the Maxwell, Walter Camp and Sporting News Player of the Year awards. The sophomore also received SEC Offensive Player of the Year honors and consensus All-America recognition from the AFCA, TSN and Walter Camp.
Thompson received consensus first-team honors from the AFCA, TSN and AP. He was also a second-team selection by Walter Camp and the FWAA. Thompson leads all Tide defensive backs and is second on team in tackles with 71 stops. He has also forced a team-high four fumbles and contributed 3.5 tackles for loss (-7 yards), two interceptions, five pass breakups and a fumble recovery this season. He was a First Team All-SEC selection by the conference coaches and a second-team pick by the Associated Press.
Smith Jr. caught 38 passes for 648 yards and seven touchdowns for the Tide and earned Second Team All-SEC honors this season. The AFCA accolade is the first All-America honor for the junior.
Buggs paced all Tide defenders with 9.5 sacks for a loss of 49 yards and ranks second on the squad with 12.5 tackles for loss (54 yards). The senior has also recorded 41 total tackles, six quarterback hurries, three pass breakups, two forced fumbles and a fumble recovery to earn Second Team All-SEC recognition.
Wilson recorded 63 tackles 4.5 tackles for loss (eight yards), one sack, two interceptions, five pass breakups and six quarterback hurries during his junior campaign and also received Second Team All-SEC recognition.