After an illustrious football career at Alabama, former American Heritage star Patrick Surtain II’s likely final pit stop at the collegiate level will be where the dream came about: South Florida.
Surtain and the top-ranked Crimson Tide will play at Hard Rock Stadium (Miami Gardens, FL) next Monday versus No. 3 Ohio State in the College Football Playoff National Championship. His friends and family will be in attendance in what’s a short car-ride from his hometown of Plantation.
“It’s going to be a tremendous feeling having them come and support me back at home,” Surtain II told reporters during the CFP media availabilities. “It will be a great feeling. I’ve just got to show out and make them happy, make them proud, you know.”
Back in his high school days, Surtain was the No. 1 rated cornerback and No. 6 overall player in the 2018 class, headlining the Patriots’ 14-0 season in which they won the 5A state title his senior year. Coached by his father and former NFL pro, Patrick Suratin, the gifted defensive back ultimately chose to play for Nick Saban at ‘Bama over Miami, Clemson, LSU, others.
Fast-forward to the present day, and Surtain II has won SEC Defensive Player of the Year, received All-America honors and earned DPOTG in the Rose Bowl, among many other accolades. If the 6-foot-2, 202-pound junior chooses to declare for the 2021 NFL Draft, he’ll most certainly be on the board for little time.
But that’s not his focus right now. With title aspirations on the line, his eyes are set on getting Saban the seventh championship of his coaching career. Additionally, he’ll look to serve as an ideal representation and inspiration to those from South Florida with dreams to someday be in his position.
His message says it all.
“I’d just say work hard,” he said. “South Florida, there’s talent everywhere. Your name will get called and you will be on a bright stage like this, so just keep working and keep striving to perfection.”