Alabama will have some high-profile recruits visiting Tuscaloosa for the Texas A&M game on Saturday.
Talk about playing for high stakes.
No. 6 Texas A&M is going to be in T-Town this weekend to take on No. 1 Alabama in Bryant-Denny Stadium. Both are undefeated, meaning the winner will take control of the SEC West.
Nick Saban’s staff has some added motivation this weekend. Aside from the game against the Aggies, the program will be hosting some bluechip prospects for what could turn out to be a huge recruiting event for the Crimson Tide.
Take a look at the list of prospects making their way to Tuscaloosa this weekend as well as some potential visitors:
- 5-Star Cam Akers, No. 2 RB, No. 4 Overall (Uncommitted)
- 5-Star VanDarius Cowan, No. 3 OLB, No. 31 Overall (Alabama Commit)
- 5-Star Dylan Moses, No. 1 OLB, No. 6 Overall (Alabama Commit)
- 5-Star Baron Browning, No. 2 OLB, No. 25 Overall (Uncommitted)
- 5-Star Alex Leatherwood, No. 3 OT, No. 18 Overall (Alabama Commit) *Potential Visitor*
- 5-Star Xavier Thomas, No. 2 DE, No. 5 Overall (2018, Uncommitted) *Potential Visitor*
- 4-Star Jackson Carman, No. 5 OT, No. 38 Overall (2018, Uncommitted) *Potential Visitor*
- 4-Star Nico Collins, No. 16 WR, No. 115 Overall (Uncommitted)
- 4-Star Major Tennison, No. 11 TE, Unranked Overall (Uncommitted)
- 4-Star Jaylen Kelly-Powell, No. 23 S, No. 269 Overall (Uncommitted)
- 3-Star Jhavonte Dean, JUCO CB (Alabama Commit)
Though the result of this game won’t be the deciding factor for most of these kids, a Crimson Tide victory would certainly be an added bonus.
Akers is a former Alabama commit, but it’s difficult to imagine him re-joining the class unless the Tide lost a commitment from 5-star running back Najee Harris, who’s being heavily pursued by Michigan. Ole Miss seems to be the favorite to land Akers right now.
Cowan and Moses are only two of the big-time linebacker commits in Alabama’s 2017 class. It also has 4-star inside linebacker Markail Benton and 4-star JUCO linebacker Gary Johnson. So, it’s hard to imagine Browning, whose visit will technically be on Friday, will join them — also given the Tide signed Ben Davis and Mack Wilson in the 2016 cycle. Ohio State is making a big push for Browning, but as long as Charlie Strong is at Texas, don’t count out the Longhorns from keeping the Kennedale, Texas native close to home.
Every time I’ve spoken to Kelly-Powell and Collins, I’ve gotten the feeling they’re leaning toward Jim Harbaugh’s Wolverines. Kelly-Powell is from Detroit and has a solid relationship with the Michigan staff, so it seems as though he’ll end up in Ann Arbor with his cousin, 4-star cornerback Ambry Thomas. As for Collins, he’s had 4-star quarterback Dylan McCaffrey in his ear for a long time, chirping about how great they could be together in the Big House. The Tide is still in play for Collins, but all signs point to both Kelly-Powell and Collins ending up at Michigan.
Commits and Flips
Florida has been trying to flip Leatherwood for a long time. He’ll re-announce his decision on Dec. 16, which isn’t necessarily bad news for Alabama, but it certainly isn’t great considering he’s been committed since June.
The Gators also sent Randy Shannon to visit Dean this week, but SEC Country’s Chris Kirschner believes the Gators will end up flipping someone other than Dean from the Tide’s 2017 class.
Both Cowan and 4-star quarterback Mac Jones have been recruiting Tennison to Tuscaloosa, and it seems as though the former Texas commit is going to end up with the Crimson Tide even though Georgia and Michigan are making pushes.
Note: Scout rankings and ratings used in this article.