Financially, this might be a gamble by the young receive, but it could end up paying dividends. In a loaded class that will include former teammates Jerry Jeudy and Henry Ruggs III, it would have been easy for Smith to get lost in the shuffle. Often considered the "other guy" in Alabama's talented receiving corps, returning to school will give Smith a chance to seize the top receiving spot with the Tide.
Smith broke out in a big way this year, recording 68 receptions for 1,256 yards and 14 touchdowns. So far, in three seasons, he's posted a 118-2,109-23 stat line. If he can post big numbers next year, it will go a long way towards silencing skeptics who think his big year was thanks to defenses paying more attention to Jeudy and Ruggs.