Alabama is loaded for a run at back-to-back national championships in 2016. That’s part of the reason defensive lineman Jonathan Allen decided he will return for his senior year.
The junior spoke at length with ESPN.com‘s Chris Low after making his decision, saying he solicited advice from a large number of people — including family, Nick Saban and his teammates — before putting the NFL on hold.
Allen said two seniors in particular — linebacker Reggie Ragland and lineman Jarran Reed — inspired him to stay in school. Both Ragland and Reed received second-round grades after their junior season; now both are projected first-rounders.
For Allen, his decision-making process was drama free.
“The good thing about it is that nobody told me what I should do,” he told Low. “They gave me the facts, let me bounce things off of them and then let me make the decision.”
The Virginia native plans on undergoing shoulder surgery this offseason and will take out an insurance policy to protect him during his final year in Tuscaloosa.
“I kept coming back to the same things,” he said. “I’ll get my shoulder fixed, move my grade up into the first round and take a shot at winning another national championship. You can’t beat that.”