Eight players from the Alabama Football 2021 roster have new teams. Currently, four more Crimson Tide players are in the Transfer Portal. A few more Tide players jumping into the Portal will be no surprise.
On at least four occasions next season, it will be friends vs. friends as Crimson Tide players compete against their former teammates. In the season opener, former Crimson Tider, Xavier Williams will return to Tuscaloosa as a Utah State Aggie. The Aggies went 11-3 in the 2021 season and will be playing for more than a big paycheck in Bryant-Denny.
In the Tide’s second game, a road contest against Texas, Jahleel Billingsley will try to show Longhorns’ fans he was under-utilized in Tuscaloosa. The Tide will compete against linebacker Drew Sanders when it travels to Fayetteville to face the Razorbacks. Cornerback Marcus Banks will come to Tuscaloosa in late October as a member of the Mississippi State Bulldogs.
Shane Lee, Jaylen Moody, Tommy Brown and Javon Baker are still looking for new teams, meaning other potential ‘friends vs. friends matchups. Circulating rumors are that Maryland wants Tommy Brown and that Javon Baker and Florida have mutual interest.
Rating transfer decisions of former Alabama football players
Jahleel Billingsley at Texas and Drew Sanders at Arkansas should start next fall.
Not every former Crimson Tide will walk into a new starting role. Three that appear to be near-locks to start next fall are King Mwikuta, Pierce Quick and Jackson Bratton. Bringing Mwikuta to Arkansas State is a home run for Butch Jones, who gets the addition of a linebacker who should be dominant in the Sun Belt. Quick and Bratton will be solid additions to Georgia Tech and UAB and likely starters.
Xavier Williams also has a good chance to start for Utah State. The Aggies’ top receiver last season, Deven Thompkins declared for the NFL. The Aggies were No. 2 in the Moutain West last season in passing offense.
Marcus Banks will have to win a starting job in Starkville. He should have a good chance given the strong reviews he earned at Alabama football practices.
The Paul Tyson move to Arizona State is a head-scratcher. The Sun Devils have a full quarterback room, including returning starter, Jayden Daniels. Tyson may be content to watch and wait again. Due to the extra year awarded to players because of COVID, Tyson has three more seasons of eligibility.
Best of luck to all the former Alabama Crimson Tide players at their new schools – even those competing against the Tide next season.