BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Arkansas junior defensive lineman T.J. Smith will represent the Razorbacks on the Southeastern Conference Football Leadership Council, which convenes at the league office Friday and Saturday.
The Football Leadership Council consists of one football student-athlete from each of the SEC’s 14 institutions and is one of three components of the SEC Student-Athlete Leadership Council. The other two consist of representatives on the Men’s and Women’s Basketball Leadership Councils.
SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey introduced new Student-Athlete Leadership Councils in 2016 for the sports of football and men’s and women’s basketball which, in addition to the conference’s longstanding Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC), provide student-athletes with additional opportunities to engage with campus leaders and conference office staff. The councils serve as a conduit of communication to the conference office on issues related to student-athlete experience and student-athlete wellness.
Among the agenda items for the group this weekend is a review of NCAA and SEC legislative items, open discussion on topics submitted by members of the Council, and engagement with football officials on rules of the game and student-athlete/referee interaction. Marcus Spears, SEC Network analyst and former SEC football student-athlete, will also meet with the group to discuss leadership and career development.
Recent legislation passed by representatives from Autonomy Conferences that increased the allowance provided to student-athletes who serve as hosts for visiting recruits was initially proposed by the SEC Football Student-Athlete Leadership Council last year.
A native of Moultrie, Georgia, Smith started all 12 games last season, recording 26 tackles, 4.0 tackles for loss, 2.0 sacks and one fumble forced.
In addition to Smith, the student-athletes who comprise the SEC Football Leadership Council are: Josh Casher (Alabama), Derrick Brown (Auburn); Jeremiah Moon (Florida), Charlie Woerner (Georgia), Jordan Griffin (Kentucky), Blake Ferguson (LSU), Javon Patterson (Ole Miss), Gerri Green (Mississippi State), Damarea Crockett (Missouri), Bryson Allen-Williams (South Carolina), Micah Abernathy (Tennessee), Braden Mann (Texas A&M), Khari Blasingame (Vanderbilt), and Brandon Lee (Missouri – Autonomy Representative).