2013 CLASS FILLING UP FAST
only July, but Alabama is close to wrapping up its 2013 recruiting
class. The Tide has 18 commitments, though one or two of those have
academic hurdles to clear before they can sign next February. Early
word was that UA would sign a maximum of 22 or 23 in this class. But
don't be surprised if the Tide takes the full allotment of 25. Here's
a look at the how the class might shape up.
Two players slated to make their decisions this summer are
Durham-Hillside, NC, tight end Josh McNeil (6-5, 235) and
Jacksonville-Sandalwood, FL, defensive lineman DeMarcus Walker.
McNeil will choose between Alabama and Georgia sometime later this
summer. Walker, who is still considering Alabama, Auburn, Florida,
FSU, LSU, Tennessee, and USC, will announce on August 3rd.
consensus is that McNeil will pick Alabama. But a few Georgia sources
insist that the Bulldogs are the team to beat. McNeil has said
recently that Alabama is still his favorite. So unless something
changes, it would appear that the Tide is the frontrunner for his
As for DeMarcus Walker, the prediction here is
that he picks Alabama. The 6-3, 285-pound Walker is a very talented
player and would be a major boost to UA's class, as there are very
few top defensive line-types left for the picking.
LINING UP FOR BAMA
Running back Derrick Henry (6-3, 240, 4.58) of
Yulee, FL, recently visited Alabama. Following the trip he
immediately issued a press release that he was decommitting from
Georgia. Henry has talked about other schools, but the feeling is
that Alabama will be tough to beat, and it won't be a surprise if he
makes a decision before the end of the summer.
selects the Tide, UA will have commitments from three blue-chip
running backs. The two already committed are Tyren Jones (5-9, 205,
4.45) of Marietta-Walton, GA, and Altee Tenpenny (5-11½, 210, 4.45)
of North Little Rock, AR.
Nothing is written in stone, but if
Henry picks Alabama, it's hard to figure another running back in this
class. But there are a couple of others to keep an eye on.
Tide is slated to get a visit in July from the nation's top running
back, Derrick Green (5-11, 215, 4.4) of Richmond-Hermitage, VA. Green
has offers from almost every school in the country. He lists the Tide
among his chief favorites, but the guess is he'll land at another
Alvin Kamara (5-10, 195, 4.4) of Norcross, GA, is
another dynamite running back who has been strongly linked to Alabama
for several months. Kamara has the athleticism to play other
positions, including wide receiver or cornerback, but he's told TI
that he wants to be a running back in college.
MORE TIGHT ENDS
In addition to Josh McNeil, Alabama is in on tight ends
Greg Taboada (6-5, 243) of Atlanta-Marist and Hunter Henry (6-5, 240)
of Little Rock-Pulaski Academy, AR.
Taboada says that he is
still defining his favorites, but that Alabama would be in his top
three. Sources say that Hunter Henry also has Alabama very high among
his favorites. Henry has said that he plans to be in Tuscaloosa
sometime this month.
ONE MORE O-LINEMAN?
One of the top
priorities in the class of 2013 is the offensive line. The UA staff
seems to have done a great job solidifying the spot with commitments
from OG/T Grant Hill (6-6. 297) of Huntsville, C/G Andy Dodd (6-4,
313) of Lindale-Pepperell, GA, OG/T Bradley Bozeman (6-5, 305) of
Roanoke-Handley, and junior college standout LT Leon Brown (6-6, 308)
of ASA College in Brooklyn, NY.
It's expected that UA will
take one more offensive lineman in this class. Laremy Tunsil (6-6,
295) of Lake City-Columbia, FL, is one of the nation's most
highly-regarded tackles. Tunsil has Alabama in his top three, along
with Florida and Georgia.
The offensive lineman to watch is
New Orleans-McDonogh 35, LA, standout Kenneth Santa Marina. The 6-4,
330-pound Marina is the odds on favorite to become the final
offensive lineman taken in this class.
TIDE AFTER PENNSYLVANIA
At wide receiver, the Tide's best shot appears to be
Robert Foster (6-3, 185, 4.5) of Monaca-Central Valley, PA. A source
close to Central Valley head coach Mark Lyons has told Tider
Insider's Rodney Orr that if an out-of-state school has a chance to
lure Foster, it would probably be Alabama. The source says that Pitt
probably has the inside track.
Foster has also been linked to
Ohio State, Penn State, Michigan State, and others. The sleek
receiver is expected to make his second visit to UA in July.
FOR THE DEFENSE
In addition to DeMarcus Walker on the defensive
side, Robert Nkemdiche (6-5, 282) of Loganville-Grayson, GA, seems to
still have the Tide very much on his mind. Nkemdiche, the nation's
number one prospect, committed to Clemson last week. But as the
recruiting process goes on, the Nkemdiche situation will be worth
A personal favorite is Hope Mills-South View, NC,
defensive end Greg Gilmore. The 6-4, 290-pound Gilmore just has the
look of a future star. Gilmore was in Tuscaloosa for UA's camp two
Saturdays ago and came away highly impressed. But it might be a
little too late, as LSU sources are convinced that the Tigers have
Gilmore locked up.
Montravius Adams (6-4, 296) of Dooly County
HS in Vienna, GA, was also on campus the same day as Gilmore.
Following the visit, Adams said that Alabama had always been among
his favorites, but the Tide seems like a long shot to gain his
IS DEE LINER OPEN TO ALABAMA?
Publicly, the 6-3,
270-pound defensive lineman from Muscle Shoals says he has no
interest in the Tide, and that he's firmly committed to Auburn. Maybe
he'll stick with his commitment, but several sources say that he's
still thinking about Alabama, LSU, and USC.
There are other
defensive linemen on the board, and a junior college DL could emerge
LINEBACKERS ARE PLENTIFUL
At linebacker, Alabama
still has a commitment from Reuben Foster (6-1, 250) of Auburn HS.
The Tide also has its eyes on Matthew Thomas (6-4, 205) of
Miami-Washington. Thomas has UA among his favorites, but the guess is
that he ends up staying closer to home.
Another linebacker to
keep an eye on is camp standout Shaun McGee of Brookwood HS in
Snellville, GA. Immediately upon receiving an offer from UA earlier
this month, the 6-2½, 230-pound McGee declared Alabama his
ANOTHER CORNER AND BIG SAFETY
UA is looking for
another corner to go with the commitments it has from Anthony Averett
(5-11, 170, 4.45) of Woodbury, NJ, and Maurice Smith (6-0, 180, 4.5)
of Sugar Land-Dulles, TX.
It doesn't seem that the Tide is
ready to put the full-court press on Brentwood Academy, TN, star
Jalen Ramsey just yet. The 6-1, 187-pound Ramsey is an outstanding
athlete with numerous offers. UA certainly has interest in Ramsey.
It'll be interesting to see if the Tide makes a strong push
Marquez White (6-1, 175, 4.5) of Dothan-Northview is a
lifelong Alabama fan that is committed to Florida State. White, who
recently landed an Alabama offer, plans to visit UA in July.
would like to add a big safety to this class. Antonio Conner (6-1,
218) of Batesville-South Panola, MS, and Holland Fisher (6-1, 197) of
Midlothian-Manchester, VA, fit that mold.
recruiting know that it's next to impossible to beat Ole Miss for a
player from South Panola. But word is out at South Panola that
Conner, one of the nation's elite prospects, is looking to cut his
own path. No doubt Ole Miss will have to be dealt with until the end,
but Alabama and Mississippi State appear to be two of the
Fisher, a very highly regarded prospect, is
committed to Virginia Tech, but has not ruled out Alabama and hopes
to visit Tuscaloosa this summer.