The SEC had three representatives in NFL.com’s “15 for 15: College Football’s Smartest Players List,” including Tennessee starting quarterback Joshua Dobbs, who made the list in back-to-back seasons, who ranked second. Kentucky punter Landon Foster was ninth and Alabama offensive lineman Ryan Kelly was No. 13.
The list was topped by Kent State defensive back Jordan Italiano, a chemistry major on a medical track with a 3.978 GPA. Here’s what the website wrote of each SEC representative:
2. Josh Dobbs, QB, Tennessee
“The Volunteers’ starting quarterback and the program’s single best hope for a quicker turnaround is an aerospace engineering major. While he was commanding the UT offense in spring practice, his class schedule included a course in thermodynamics, one on circuit components, and a third that sounds like lots of fun: matrix computations. Our matrix computes that football is elementary for Dobbs.”
9. Landon Foster, P, Kentucky
“Along with a punting average of better than 42 yards, the Wildcats’ senior-to-be averages a 4.0 in the classroom on a finance and marketing track. He was chosen as an Academic All-American last year. You want an on-field track record? He’s logged more than 60 punts per year over the last three seasons and is on pace to finish his UK career with more than 250.”
13. Ryan Kelly, OL, Alabama
“Kelly, one of the top centers in the country and a candidate for the Rimington Trophy, has also put together quite an academic record. He picked up an undergraduate degree before last season started and is now plowing through a Master’s degree in marketing, which he’ll complete in December. His graduate-school GPA is a 4.0. All that, and he’ll anchor Alabama’s line as a third-year starter this fall.”