HOOVER, Ala.- The University of Alabama football team was selected as the favorite to win the Southeastern Conference’s Western Division and the 2019 SEC Championship, the league office announced on Friday morning. The Crimson Tide also landed a league-high 19 players on the All-SEC Teams, with both the predicted finish and all-league nominees being selected by media members in attendance at SEC Media Days this past week.
The Crimson Tide was picked to win the SEC Western Division with 253 first-place votes and 1,813 points, ranking ahead of LSU, which was predicted to finish second in the division with 1,493 points. Alabama also received the most votes to finish as SEC champions once again, with the Tide finishing at 203 points compared to Georgia’s 49.
Alabama’s All-SEC list of 19 players occupy 21 spots, including an SEC-record 12 first-team honorees to go with three second-team and six third-team selections. The 12 first-teamers include six players on offense, four on defense and one specialist. The record number surpasses the previous high of 10 first-team honorees set by Alabama in 2017.
The Crimson Tide’s 12 first-team selections include six on offense in juniors Tua Tagovailoa (quarterback), Najee Harris (running back), Jerry Jeudy and Henry Ruggs III (wide receiver), and Alex Leatherwood and Jedrick Wills Jr. (offensive line). The four on defense are made up of seniors Raekwon Davis (defensive line) and Trevon Diggs (defensive back) along with redshirt senior Anfernee Jennings and junior Dylan Moses (linebacker). Sophomore Jaylen Waddle rounds out the first-team selections, landing two spots on the specialist list as an all-purpose player and as a return specialist.
Waddle makes another appearance on the second team (wide receiver), in addition to sophomore Patrick Surtain II and junior Xavier McKinney (defensive back). Spotting the third team for the Crimson Tide is junior LaBryan Ray (defensive line), senior Shyheim Carter (defensive back), redshirt senior Matt Womack (offensive line), and redshirt juniors Terrell Lewis (linebacker), Miller Forristall (tight end) and Deonte Brown (offensive line).
Alabama enters the 2019 campaign having won a league-leading 27 SEC Championships in program history, including four of the last five conference titles. The Crimson Tide is scheduled to open the 2019 season on Aug. 31 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Ga. Alabama will square off with Duke in the 2019 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game with the game airing live on ABC at 2:30 p.m. CT.