LSU Football Named 'Defensive Back U' by Sports Illustrated
It's a debate players and even casual college football fans have gone back and forth on for years. It's a term, "DBU," that's thrown around so often in the college football world that most people already know what it means.
On Monday, Sports Illustrated tried to put the debate of which program can claim the "Defensive Back University" title to rest and it was the purple and gold that came out on top. The Tigers earned a total of 103 point, edging out Alabama (96) while Florida was the next highest school, earning 71 points.
The scoring system for determining the ranking was broken down into three separate categories: draft position, NFL games started and NFL awards. Here's the scoring system Sports Illustrated used when determining the rankings for each team:
Top 10: 4 points
Round 1 (non-top 10): 3 points
Rounds 2-3: 2 points
Rounds 4-7: 1 point
Undrafted: 0 points
NFL GAMES STARTED
80-plus: 5 points
48 to 79: 4 points
16 to 47: 3 points
5 to 15: 2 points
1 to 4: 1 point
Defensive Player of the Year: 4 points
First-Team All-Pro: 3 points
Defensive Rookie of the Year: 2 points
It's important to note that the rankings only take into account the last 10 years in college football. Cornerbacks and safeties were each broken down into two separate categories as LSU was named 'Cornerback U' while Alabama earned 'Safety U' with the Tigers finishing in a close second.
In that time, LSU has produced five first round picks and four All-Pro's, headlined by former legends Patrick Peterson, Tyrann Mathieu, Tre'Davious White and Jamal Adams. Peterson, Mathieu, White and Adams have a combined seven All-Pro honors between the four of them, which really boosted LSU over the top in the rankings.
Here's a list of all LSU defensive backs that were used as part of SI's ranking:
Patrick Peterson (2011 5th overall, 138 starts, 3x All-Pro)
Tyrann Mathieu (2013 third round, 89 starts, 2x All-Pro)
Jamal Adams (2017 6th overall, 46 starts, All-Pro)
Tre'Davious White (2017 first round, 47 starts, All-Pro)
Morris Claiborne (2012 6th overall, 74 starts)
Eric Reid (2013 first round, 98 starts)
Donte Jackson (2018 second round, 26 starts)
Jalen Collins (2015 second round, 8 starts)
Jalen Mills (2016 seventh round, 34 starts)
Greedy Williams (2019 second round, 12 starts)
Delvin Breaux (2012 undrafted, 22 starts)
Ron Brooks (2012 fourth round, 8 starts)
Rashard Robinson (2016 fourth round, 15 starts)
Brandon Taylor (2012 third round, 1 start)
Chad Jones (2010 third round)
Danny McCray (2010 undrafted, 10 starts)
Tharold Simon (2013 fifth round, 5 starts)
Kevin Toliver (2018 undrafted, 2 starts)
Chris Hawkins (2010 undrafted)
Craig Loston (2014 undrafted)
Roland Martin (2015 undrafted)
The alumni range from players like Peterson, who was drafted No. 5 overall in 2011, to undrafted free agents like Delvin Breaux who earned 22 starts in his time with the New Orleans Saints. The Tigers are expected to add a few more to this list in the 2020 draft as cornerback Kristian Fulton and safety Grant Delpit could slide into the first round, though they've both been projected to be second round picks.
If there's one issue to take away with this ranking, it'd have to be Ohio State being No. 5 on this list. The Buckeyes have consistently punched defensive backs to the next level, even having more first round draft choices than LSU (6) over the last 10 years.
The debate for "DBU" won't stop. If anything, this ranking will spark even more of a debate among alumni, players and fans alike, of the various programs that likely feel disrespected.
All of the contenders wear the "DBU" title with a badge of honor. Just ask Adams, who makes it his personal mission to not let people forget that LSU is deserving of the title.