Alabama has been the premier college football program in the nation over the past eight years with four national titles on its resume.
If those titles aren’t convincing enough, there is evidence of the Crimson Tide’s dominance sprinkled across rosters throughout the NFL. Former Alabama wide receiver and current Atlanta Falcons star Julio Jones and other former Alabama players talked to ESPN writer Vaughn McClure about how they make sure to maintain their fraternity and friendships built on campus even while they’re competing in the NFL.
“It’s just a brotherhood we build there when we’re going to the University of Alabama,” Jones told ESPN. “Even if you don’t talk to that guy for a little bit because you understand he’s working or doing whatever, when you see each other you always talk. You talk to each other and just see how each other are doing, where you’re at in life.”
According to ESPN Stats & Information, there are 32 former Crimson Tide players who have played in an NFL game this season and the 39 draft picks from Alabama over the past five years are the most from any Football Bowl Subdivision school. Jones told ESPN he often exchanges jerseys with many of his fellow alumni in the league.
He’s likely to complete the ritual again this week when Atlanta plays Oakland, where wide receiver Amari Cooper is developing into a strong young receiver in his second season as a pro.
“Amari, he’s a fast, twitchy guy, a quick guy,” Jones told ESPN. “He’s a great player. He’s going to go out there (and) he’s going to compete for four quarters. Typical training you get from Alabama, just leaving everything out there on the line, just giving 100 percent.”