The second installment of Broward County Braveheart’s is focused on the next in line of great receivers to play for the University of Alabama, Calvin Ridley. After the departure of Julio Jones, many wondered if the Crimson Tide would ever find a receiving threat of that caliber again. Their answers were soon answered with Amari Cooper and shortly after his departure, things only got better with the arrival of Ridley. He is another talent that hails from Fort Lauderdale, and he played his high school career at Monarch High school.
Superb From The Start
Calvin Ridley is everything he was advertised to be in high school. Before arriving to the University of Alabama, Ridley was a consensus five-star prospect and the top wide receiver prospect from several recruiting websites. He was an Under Armour All-American but his talent was recognized by his Alabama teammates before they even got the chance to get in pads. When the season arrived, it was the opportunity for the rest of the world to see his talent. As a freshman, Ridley would lead the Crimson Tide in receptions with 89, while also smashing the freshman receiving yard mark set by Cooper. Those feats would earn him Freshmen All-American honors as well as being All-SEC 2nd team member.
The winning tradition continued as Alabama also won the national championship that season as well. Even better, there wasn’t a drop off after losing one of the best receivers in the program’s history, although he was just in his first season Ridley was very advanced in his technique at the position. It’s another reason why scouts are anticipating next season as being his final collegiate season.
Calvin Ridley has the rare trait of being able to run full speed and still have the ability to cut on a dime. Very dangerous in space. pic.twitter.com/vxhI4Xqh15
Primed To Be a Pro
In his sophomore season, Ridley’s numbers went down due to a couple factors such as a freshman quarterback and a couple shuffles at offensive coordinator. Even with all of that, he is still on track to become the all-time reception leader in the history of Alabama football. Although the 2018 Draft seems like its a great distance away, scouts have already touted Ridley as one of the more pro ready prospects.
With his departure to be almost certain, Ridley made sure to add more to the Alabama arsenal by bringing in his high school teammate Jerry Jeudy. He comes into the program as an Under-Armour All-American, as well as a five-star prospect much like Ridley. Their relationship was a big factor into his decision and a big reason why Jeudy chose to graduate early to get to Alabama. Not only did he enroll early but he went on to win the MVP of the spring game, so whatever records Ridley may break he knows he has his young protege on his heels.
His younger brother, Riley Ridley, is also at the University of Georgia playing for Nick Saban‘s protege, and former Alabama defensive coordinator Kirby Smart. The three tormented defenses at Monarch High School are together in Coconut Creek; now it is the SEC’s turn to learn about the type of talent that is being produced in the Broward County region of South Florida.