In the wake of Nick Saban’s retirement, Alabama Crimson Tide star safety Caleb Downs appears to be among the players gearing up to enter the transfer portal from the Crimson Tide’s ranks. Who could be in the running for Downs’ services in 2024?
Alabama Safety Caleb Downs Set To Enter Transfer Portal
According to Pete Thamel, Senior College Football Writer at ESPN, Downs is “starting the process” of entering the transfer portal, as of the morning of Jan. 17.
Though it’s not confirmed as of this moment, the general understanding is that Downs could very well be on the move in the near future.
This news comes just a week after legendary Alabama head coach Nick Saban announced his retirement from college football. The Crimson Tide moved quickly to draw Kalen DeBoer from Washington as a replacement, but it wasn’t enough to keep Downs’ allegiance.
Downs was a five-star recruit and a top-10 national talent in the 2023 recruiting class, and shined as a true freshman at Alabama. In 2023, he amassed 107 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, two interceptions, four pass breakups, a forced fumble, and a fumble recovery.
In the process, Downs earned a slew of honors, including Sean Alexander Freshman of the Year and second-team All-SEC recognition. Not only was he listed as a Freshman All-American, but he also earned general All-American recognition from various outlets.
At 6’0″, 203 pounds, Downs is an explosive and versatile playmaker on the back end, who’s already anticipated as a potential first-round pick in the 2026 NFL Draft. Downs’ loss is a major blow to Alabama’s secondary, and the focus now shifts to his next destination.
With speculation regarding Downs’ destination starting to grow louder, Georgia has been theorized as a likely destination.
The Bulldogs and Kirby Smart were heavily interested in Downs coming out of high school, and Travaris Robinson — Alabama’s cornerbacks coach from the 2022 and 2023 seasons — recently signed with Georgia to become their co-defensive coordinator and safeties coach.
At Georgia, Downs would be able to maintain continuity with Robinson, as well as learn from Smart, an experienced defensive coach. He’d join forces with another SEC dynasty, and he’d also form one of the most fearsome safety tandems in the league with Malaki Starks alongside him.
Once Downs’ entry into the transfer portal is made official, this article will be updated with pertinent information. Stick with us at College Football Network for more analysis on potential landing spots and team fits.
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