Alabama tight end Brandon Lewis said it was a tough decision not to return to the team for his final year of eligibility, a decision he made a couple weeks before Nick Saban announced the news on Tuesday.
“It was before the first scrimmage (March 31), and I felt it was a decision I had to make for me. I really enjoyed the coaches and players at Alabama. It was a tough decision but I feel like it was the best for me.” Lewis said.
Lewis, a Pleasant Grove native, was a part of the stellar 2008 recruiting class as a 4-star defensive end coming out of high school, but had to begin his career at East Mississippi Community College after failing to qualify. He transferred to Alabama in 2010.
After spending his first season as a reserve defensive lineman, Lewis was moved to tight end before the 2011 season. He played in seven games last year, mainly in short yardage situations.
“Playing time was an issue and having my degree already made it a tough decision.” Lewis said.
When asked how Nick Saban took the news, Lewis responded “Coach Saban is a great person. He was really respectful of my decision. I will miss being around my friends everyday who I became really close to over the years.”
Lewis said he expects Alabama to still be a great team next year and mentioned three players that could have breakout seasons.
“Championship caliber, as always. I think TJ Yeldon, Christion Jones and DeAndrew White will all have big seasons.” Lewis said
As for his future plans?
“As of right now, I am going to start on my masters degree and go from there.”
Sounds like an excellent plan to me.
Note: Lewis did not travel with the team to Washington D.C. to meet Barack Obama for personal reasons.
Story by Ben Culpepper for AlabamaIntel.com