Mixed results for players from 2011 Super 11 team
The Super 11 team of five years ago had its ups and downs. Five played on national-championship teams. Four were dismissed from their original college teams or left on their own. Two others had legal run-ins but finished their careers and were signed as rookie free agents. Two were taken in the 2016 NFL Draft. Four are finishing their senior seasons this fall, including the inspiring Josh Holsey, who started as a true freshman and overcame two season-ending ACL injuries to return for one more try at Auburn.
Here’s a look back at how those 11 players – chosen in the preseason of 2011 – progressed with their football careers.
*Kenyan Drake, Hillgrove:Drake was perhaps the nation’s best backup last season, when he played behind Heisman Trophy winner Derrick Henry on Alabama’s national-championship team. Drake returned a kickoff for a touchdown in the title game. Drake was a third-round pick of the Dolphins in the 2016 NFL Draft.
*Markuss Eligwe, Stone Mountain:Eligwe was a significant backup on Florida State’s 2013 national-championship team as a redshirt freshman, suffered an early season-ending injury as a sophomore and was later dismissed from the team for violating team rules. Eligwe transferred to Georgia Southern, sat out a season, and appears in line to start at linebacker for the Eagles this fall.
*Josh Harvey-Clemons, Lowndes: Harvey-Clemons was a starting safety as a sophomore at Georgia in 2013 but was dismissed for repeated violations of team rules. He landed at Louisville with former UGA defensive coordinator Todd Grantham. In 2015, he was a third-team All-ACC pick. He will play his senior season this fall.
*Josh Holsey, Creekside: Holsey started as a true freshman at Auburn and was headed for stardom, but ACL injuries to both knees nearly ended his career. The first came during his sophomore season, then another in his second game as a senior. Holsey applied for a medical redshirt and will play a fifth season this fall.
*Jordan Jenkins, Harris County:Jenkins started six games as a true freshman and almost every game thereafter at Georgia, where he was an outside linebacker. Jenkins was drafted in the third round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Jets.
*Jarontay Jones, Stephenson:Jones quit Virginia Tech just before the 2013 season, played for a time at Bethune-Cookman and then gave up football. Jones enrolled at Georgia State and got a degree in criminal justice.
*Jonathan Jones, Carrollton:Jones got his first start as a true freshman at Auburn and was a full-time starter in the secondary his final two seasons. He had seven career interceptions. Jones signed with the Patriots as an undrafted free agent.
*Dillon Lee, Buford:Lee struggled with a couple of off-the-field issues, including a DUI, but was a valuable backup linebacker, playing 50 games in his career, and had 27 tackles on Alabama’s national-championship team. Lee was impressive in NFL workouts and signed with the Saints as an undrafted free agent.
*Geno Matias-Smith, St. Pius:Smith’s Alabama career was sidetracked by a couple of DUI arrests, but he bounced back as a senior to earn a starting position at safety on the national-championship team. He was Alabama’s third-leading tackler. He signed as an undrafted free agent with the Redskins.
*Jonathan Taylor, Jenkins County:Taylor was dismissed at Georgia after his sophomore season in the wake of separate arrests on charges of theft and domestic violence. Taylor then was signed by Alabama despite pending charges and participated in spring practice. Another incidence of domestic violence led to his dismissal at Alabama. After a season at Copiah-Lincoln Community College, Taylor is a senior this fall at Southeastern Louisiana.
*Dalvin Tomlinson, Henry County: Now a senior, Tomlinson has been a prominent backup on Alabama’s defensive line and led down linemen in pass breakups on the 2015 national-championship team. He lost his redshirt freshman season to a knee injury.
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