The 2019 Sun Belt has plenty of story lines and a bevy of players to make the plot that much more interesting.
Over the next few days, UDD will countdown the Top 30 players entering the 2019 season.
30. Aaron Brewer/C/Texas State
Fitting that we start our list with the position that starts every possession from scrimmage.
Brewer has been a consistent starter for the Bobcats.
He’s a dependable run blocker who also has natural instincts when Texas State drops back to pass. The senior has been attached to some unproductive offenses in recent years, but he has always been a steady force.
If he remains under center in 2019, First Team All Sun Belt is a very real possibility.
29. Tarron Jackson/DE/Coastal Carolina
The Chanticleers need to put more pressure on opposing offenses.
Jackson has eight tackles for loss, five quarterback hurries and three sacks, which puts him as the returning leader in all of those crucial categories. The junior is a nice blend of power and pursuit on the outside.
That said, he will need help getting into the opposing backfields in 2019.
28. Ja’Marcus Bradley/WR/Louisiana
Bradley can ball.
The senior wideout caught 10 touchdowns last season and figures to get a number of one-on-one matchups with many teams keyed into Louisiana’s lethal running game.
If teammate Jarrod Jackson plays well, that could mean even more chances to break 10 touchdowns this season for Bradley.
27. Tra Minter/RB-KR/South Alabama
The Jaguars will need to win some field position battles in 2019 to remain competitive.
Few players can single-handedly help flip that field position in a hurry than Minter.
The senior finished 2nd Team All Sun Belt last season after putting up 836 yards rushing and another 201 yards on the ground with seven total scores, including a punt return touchdown.
A young South Alabama offense will lean heavily on Minter’s production to help keep the heat off an unproven passing game.
26. Tyler Bass/K/Georgia Southern
Alright, everyone settle down.
Yes, a kicker is on this list, but not because there is some sort of quota for special teams this list needs to meet.
Bass went an incredibly consistent 19-for-21 on field goals, including 10 of 11 from 40 yards or longer. And while Georgia Southern did not have many nail-biting fourth quarters (in both wins and losses), he delivered a 40-yarder at the gun to beat Eastern Michigan in the Camellia Bowl.
Consistency. Range. Clutch.
If quarterback Shai Werts misses time from a suspension, the Eagles will need to capitalize on every scoring opportunity.
25. Hunter Atkinson/OT/Georgia State
The Panthers endured a difficult 2018 campaign.
One of the points of optimism for Georgia State heading into 2019, however, is the play of Atkinson. The Preseason All-First-Team Sun Belt offensive tackle has shown tremendous growth after starting his career as a tight end in 2016.
The redshirt senior will need to provide leadership and a healthy dose of protecting quarterback Dan Ellington for the Panthers to gain offensive traction early this season.