Alabama placed five players on the All-America teams as selected both by the Associated Press and by the Football Writers Association of America, and the Crimson Tide also had nine players selected All-Southeastern Conference by the AP.
The Associated Press placed five Bama players on its three teams with junior tailback and Heisman Trophy winner Derrick Henry joined by junior defensive lineman A’Shawn Robinson and senior linebacker Reggie Ragland. The AP had senior center Ryan Kelly on the second team and junior safety Eddie Jackson third team.
The Football Writers had Kelly joining Henry, Robinson, and Ragland on the first team and Jackson second team.
Alabama next plays in the first round of the College Football Playoff on Dec. 31 against Michigan State in the Cotton Bowl.
In addition to being named Heisman Trophy winner, Henry was Doak Walker Award winner as the nation’s best running back and Maxwell and Walter Camp Player of the Year winner following a standout season in which he rushed for an SEC record 1,986 yards and an FBS-leading 23 touchdowns. The first-team selections were his third and fourth of the postseason, as he was also named a USA Today and Walter Camp Football Foundation All-America last week.
Ragland also earned his third and fourth first-team selections of the postseason thanks to an outstanding season as the captain of one of the top-ranked defensive units in college football. He led a defense that leads the nation in rushing defense (74.0 ypg), ranks second in total defense (258.2 ypg), and third in scoring defense at 14.4 points per game. A finalist for the Bednarik, Butkus and Nagurski, Ragland leads the Crimson Tide in tackles with 90, including 6 1/2 for loss (-23 yards) while adding six quarterback hurries.
Robinson, the Tide’s third AP First Team choice, has been a force along what is regarded as one of the top defensive fronts in the nation. He has collected a career-high 42 tackles this season, including 7 1/2 for a loss (-25 yards) and 3 1/2 sacks (-19 yards). Robinson also has nine quarterback hurries, two pass breakups, a fumble recovery, and one blocked PAT. He was also recognized by Walter Camp and USA Today, being selected as a second-teamer by both outlets.
Kelly, the 2015 Rimington Trophy winner as the nation’s best center, anchored a Crimson Tide offense that provided holes for Henry on his way to winning the Heisman while the team rushed for an average of 208.2 yards per game as a unit. He graded out at an average of 88.4 percent with five games over 90 percent. The senior center missed only eight assignments in 948 snaps and did not allow a sack. Kelly was honored as a member of the first team by both Walter Camp and USA Today.
Jackson was also a second team selection by Walter Camp. Jackson leads the Alabama secondary that ranks second in passes defended (81) and third in pass breakups (65). In his first season as a starting safety, the junior leads the SEC with five interceptions and 230 return yards, including two pick-sixes. His 230 return yards are an Alabama single-season record and rank second nationally.
The Crimson Tide led the way with nine All-SEC selections as chosen by the AP, including a league-high seven first-team honorees from the 2015 team that finished the regular season 11-1 and 7-1 in Southeastern Conference play.
Henry, Kelly, and sophomore left tackle Cam Robinson were the Tide’s representatives on the first team offense. Robinson, Ragland, Jackson, and junior defensive lineman Jonathan Allen were first team defense.
Those same seven had been selected first team All-SEC by the conference’s head coaches last week.
Senior defensive lineman Jarran Reed and freshman wide receiver Calvin Ridley represented Alabama on the second team. Ridley was also picked as a second team honoree last week by SEC coaches as well as a freshman all-conference player.
Henry and Ragland also received individual honors from AP voters. Henry was unanimously selected as the SEC Offensive Player of the Year, while Ragland was named the SEC Defensive Player of the Year. The league’s coaches also selected the duo as the offensive and defensive Player of the Year.