Key SMU Position Battles

Hatts breaks down his key position battles for SMU football during training camp!

Wide Receivers

There is one lock heading into camp and that is Courtland Sutton. Beyond that, the wide receiver spots are open for business. Darius Joseph and Kevin Thomas will be locked in a good battle at the other receiver spot while Xavier Castille and James Proche will battle for the slot receiver position. With a good fall camp, Alex Honey could even play his way onto the field, but after the spring Courtland Sutton had, that is going to be a little tougher. This is not a bad problem to have, as each of these provides a solid option for the new coaching staff. The interesting battle here will be between Joseph and Thomas, as Joseph has been one of the most reliable guys for SMU the last couple of years, but may not be the best option.

Defensive Back

One of SMU’s leaders on defense is gone with no obvious replacement behind him. Who will take the place of Hayden Greenbauer? Both A.J. Justice and Troy Castle will be battling it out to take over this spot, both have been up and down over the last couple of years. With Montes and Horace Richardson back as the corners, this stands as the biggest question mark. William Jeanlys and Jesse Montgomery have seen considerable time with the No. 1s too. David Johnson is now listed and will get an opportunity to play right away too so there's still some uncertainty there. Justice was part of a four-man rotation last year while Troy Castle was one of those guys who impressed in practice but couldn’t find his way onto the field. One dark horse in this race is freshman Rodney Clemons who could unseat both. However this competition shakes out, they are going to be under the gun right off the bat when SMU takes on Baylor.

Star Position

Before spring, this would not have even been a question that Shakiel Randolph was going to start at this spot. However, after the spring Kyran Mitchell had, this is suddenly a little bit of a competition. Randolph still has the leg up but the heat is on after Mitchell showed he could thrive in this position as well. This could set SMU up well to slide Randolph back in the secondary if he doesn’t win the job but both will provide nice options for SMU heading into this season. Anthony Rhone also showed a solid ability to bring heat from the Star in the spring too. Make no mistake about it, this is still Randolph’s job to lose, but he is going to go have to perform throughout camp and stay on the field.

Running backs

Prescott Line has not been able to grab a hold of the running back position yet in his time at SMU, but will have another crack at it this season. The incumbent will have to fend off some stiff competition from a couple of freshman in Braeden West and Xavier Jones. Line might also have to compete with Darius Durall but there is no doubt with four guys in the running, this is going to be one of the more interesting battles in camp considering the important role the position will play this upcoming season. Every running back offers their own merits, but after the spring Line had, he is definitely the leader heading into camp.

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