It took just two periods for the Heisman winner to make an indelible mark between the Games for the College Football Championship.
The best possible scenario for a championship final, for any sport, is a round trip with a dramatic ending in the final moments, where one of the stars is established as a legend.
The second best scenario, in my opinion, is that, in any game – even if it is not very competitive – a player gives us one of those performances that are never forgotten.
That was what the winner of the Trofeo Heisman 2020, DeVonta Smith.
The wide receiver of Alabama he dispatched with 12 receptions for 215 yards and three touchdown catches, all in the first half of the game. In my opinion, that is what we will remember more as this party moves away from us on the timeline.
At half time, Smith He already had us looking for the historical marks of the FBS for a single match in receptions (23, achieved twice: Tyler Jones for Eastern Michigan vs. Central Michigan, Nov. 28, 2008; and Randy Gatewood for UNLV vs. Idaho, September 17, 1994); in touchdown receptions (seven, of Rashaun Woods for Oklahoma State vs. SMU, September 20, 2003); and receiving yards (405, from Troy Edwards for Louisiana Tech vs. Nebraska, August 29, 1998).
Unfortunately, an injury to a finger on his right hand robbed us of the opportunity to see what else he could do. Smith In the second half. The catcher was taken to the locker room after the injury, to undergo X-rays, and returned to the field in the middle of the fourth period, with the game almost won, and unequipped.
Of course, Smith he’s no stranger to the big plays, in the biggest moments, under the brightest lights. After all, he’s the same player who caught the touchdown pass from Tua Tagovailoa for what Alabama will be crowned on Georgia at 2017 National Championship Game.
But, this was his day, with everything and that his production was limited to just two rooms. No other player on the pitch astonished us more than Smith, who made his way through the defenders of the Buckeyes with the fluidity and speed that a skier leaves behind the doors in the slalom.
How good was the performance of Smith, that the 22 carries for 79 yards and two touchdowns, and seven catches for 79 yards with a third touchdown from the running back Najee Harris, went into the background? The same could be said for the 36-of-45 completions for 464 yards with five touchdowns without an interception. Mac Jones.
Even the head coach’s seventh national title Nick Saban, with which he breaks a historical tie with the legendary Bear Bryant, seemed to be left as a footnote.
The night in Miami belonged to Smith, who culminated in the most brilliant way possible, in terms of performance, a collegiate career full of feats. In turn, it ends up fully justifying the decision of Smith of not jumping to the draft of the NFL last year, when the then also wide receivers of the Crimson Tide, Jerry Jeudy and Henry Ruggs III, they did fly into the professional ranks.
Smith I still had unfinished business. Boy did he solve them, with the national title No. 13 for ‘Bama. Above all, the unforgettable night came before a real, genuine candidate for the title in Ohio State. It was not the competence of FCS. But at times, Alabama made the Buckeyes as of lower division. Tonight, we saw the deadliest offense ever Saban in front of Tide, and Smith He was the most dangerous player in the attack.
“I’ll be fine,” he replied Smith in the post-game interview, on the ground, when asked about the status of his hand, revealing a little bit of that introverted personality.
What’s next for Smith is the preparation for the Draft 2021 from NFL, where today he cleared any doubts about whether he will hear his name between the first innings of the first round. Smith it is an unusual, rare, but proven weapon. Taking your career to the next level will undoubtedly be a delight.