TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Alabama football redshirt-senior offensive lineman Chris Owens announced on Friday afternoon that he will be returning for his final season with the Crimson Tide instead of opting for the NFL draft.
Owens made his announcement in a post on social media.
"Over the past five years, I have been blessed with the opportunity to play football at the University of Alabama, which is something I would have never imagined," Owens wrote. "I was born in New Orleans and because of Hurricane Katrina our family moved to Arlington, Texas. I had no idea my new life would turn out like this — a three-time SEC champion and a two-time CFP national champion with a bachelor's and master's degree.
"Throughout my time at Alabama, I have been fortunate to learn from Coach Saban and various other members of his staff on what it takes to be a leader and the importance of valuing the principles and values of an elite organization. The lessons I've been taught have molded me into not only a better player, but also into a better person, which I can carry with me for the rest of my life. Along the way I have met some of my lifelong friends and created memories that I will never forget, mostly because I was able to share them with my teammates.
"After long discussion with my parents and Coach Saban, I have decided to use my final year of eligibility at Alabama and return to school for one final season. I believe it allows me to not only maximize the amount of value I can create for myself as a player, but it gives me one more chance to created even more memories with my brothers on this team. I trust Coach Saban and his staff, and I believe that the opportunity to continue to learn from and develop under him is one I cannot pass up!"
Owens is a veteran backup for the Crimson Tide, starting at center in both of Alabama's College Football Playoff games against Notre Dame and Ohio State after starter Landon Dickerson went down in the SEC Championship Game due to an ACL injury. He also played at both tackle and tight end during the 2019 season.
Owens joins defensive lineman Phidarian Mathis as Alabama players who have opted to return. Quarterback Mac Jones, wide receiver Jaylen Waddle, defensive back Patrick Surtain II and defensive lineman Christian Barmore all declared on Thursday that they will be entering the NFL draft.