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Ravens General Manager Ozzie Newsome is beaming.
Of the 32 players that will be drafted in the NFL Draft’s first round, five will likely hail from his alma mater Alabama.
The list is running back Trent Richardson, safety Mark Barron, defensive end/outside linebacker Courtney Upshaw, inside linebacker Dont’a Hightower and cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick.
Ozzie on Alabama Prospects
“It’s a credit to that organization down there and their ability to go recruit players and then develop them – same things we try to do here,” Newsome said.
However, Newsome isn’t so confident that he’ll have the opportunity to take one.
He said he was talking to Alabama’s recruiting coordinator on Monday, and told him there’s a chance all five may be gone by the time the Ravens get to pick at No. 29 in the first round.
The mock drafts mirror what Newsome suspects. Richardson may be a top-5 pick. Barron is expected to go in the top 20. Upshaw, Hightower and Kirkpatrick are possibilities to be in Baltimore’s range.
Is Newsome hoping one slips to him?
“I don’t want to tip my hand, but they are good players,” Newsome said. “I’ve had the opportunity to watch them for three or four years. If one’s there, it could make our decision tough.”
Newsome could always trade in the draft to try to snag a reigning NCAA national champion.