He’s not the tallest, biggest or the most vocal guy on a national championship contender. Heck, he’s not even a running back or quarterback.
But today, Alabama’s DeVonta Smith has something no other college football player has: the Heisman Trophy for the 2020 season. He’s the first wide receiver to win the Heisman since Michigan’s Desmond Howard in 1991.
“To all the young kids out there that’s not the biggest, not the strongest, just keep pushing,” he said after the Tuesday night presentation. “Because I’m not the biggest. I’ve been doubted a lot because of my size and, really, it just comes down to you just put your mind to it, no job’s too big.”
The 6-foot-1-inch, 175-pound Smith joins Mark Ingram and Derrick Henry—both running backs—in the Alabama Heisman trophy family and, as both of his predecessors did, he’ll play for the national championship. Alabama takes on Ohio State in the College Football Playoff title game Monday night in Miami.
Smith thanked his teammates and hugged fellow finalist Mac Jones, his quarterback, in Tuscaloosa, Ala., where the two participated in the virtual ceremony. He even picked up a virtual hug from Mom.
“We love him,” Smith’s mother, Christina Smith-Sylve, said to ESPN from her socially distanced viewing party in Louisiana. “Everybody here is supporting him, we’re so proud of him. Continue being humble. Let God lead him. And we are here to support him every step of the way.”
The speedster outpaced the other three other finalists, all quarterbacks: Jones, Clemson’s Trevor Lawrence and Florida’s Kyle Trask, collecting 1,856 points to Lawrence’s 1,187 and garnering 447 first-place votes to Lawrence’s 222.
Smith expanded his stats and notoriety as the season went on, leading all FBS players with 105 receptions, 1,641 receiving yards and 20 receiving touchdowns.