With an elite program like the Alabama Crimson Tide, countless high-caliber players look to contribute to help win a national title. There are times when there can be too much of a good thing. This was the case for Alabama when junior running back Keilan Robinson entered the NCAA transfer portal on Tuesday. The level of competition is so high at Alabama, it demands either dominance or patience. Robinson was a player who was patient for a long-time behind Najee Harris and Brian Robinson Jr. The junior running back took it upon himself and relied on his gut to go to another program where he could potentially become a starter. For Alabama, their depth at the running back position decreases as it opens up a new role for the other backs.
What The Transfer Of Keilan Robinson Means For Alabama Football
Robinson Has to Bet on Himself
Robinson came into Alabama as a four-star prospect and the 15th best running back in the 2019 recruiting class. He has been a player who found playing time as a true freshman, rushing for 254 yards and two touchdowns on 39 carries. With the Tide’s devotion to the passing game and Harris taking most of the carries, Robinson did not account for a single carry, as a sophomore. He entered this Spring as the number two back behind Brian Robinson. There was also the other backs starting to assert their roles in the off-season. By entering the transfer portal, Robinson looks to become a consistent contributor or the number one back for another team when the 2021 season starts. Alabama will lose the high-caliber speed and shiftiness that Robinson possesses because he was buried in a deep depth chart.
Robinson’s Departure Serves As A Warning To The Other Backs
The loss of Robinson will be significant for the Tide’s offense based on what he can contribute. There are other running backs like sophomores Jase MccLellan, Roydell Williams, and Trey Sanders that will get the new bulk of the carries that Robinson was going to get. With Brian Robinson as a senior, one of these three backs will likely become the new leading back of the Tide’s offense. While this new role for the Tide’s offense is huge, it should come as a warning sign to the other backs. Alabama usually has two consistent backs in the backfield,which will leave one back out of the backfield. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see another one of these talented backs enter the NCAA transfer portal right after the 2021 season or during the spring of 2022.
Each one of these young backs has different attributes that define them as an elite playmaker. MccLellan is a powerful and well-balanced back with a great burst. Last season, he rushed for 245 yards and two touchdowns on 23 carries. After contributing in the 2019 season, Williams didn’t account for a single carry this past season. He is a powerful and aggressive back with great vision and a tough playstyle with and without the ball. Sanders has had a tough career at Alabama this far in his career. Right before the 2019 season, Sanders broke his foot and was out for the year. This past season, Sanders rushed for 134 yards on 30 carries. He did experience a significant car accident that shortened his 2020 season. All three of these backs will look to have a productive remaining offseason and compete with each other in the 2021 season.