Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

RECRUITING: Alabama Coaching Staff Hits the Road for In-House Visits

Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

RECRUITING: Alabama Coaching Staff Hits the Road for In-House Visits

Article excerpt

The University of Alabama has a big lead in the Rivals.com team rankings with the No. 1 class in the country. The Crimson Tide football coaching staff is making in-home visits, hosting official visitors and hoping to close strong on the remaining targets on the list.

Alabama received a couple of commitments last week in Laurence "Hootie" Jones, a Rivals100 safety from Neville High School in Monroe, La., and Jarran Reed, a three-star defensive tackle from East Mississippi Community College in Scooba, Miss. Reed helped his team win the junior college national championship on Sunday with a 52-32 victory against Georgia Military Academy.

"I felt like Alabama was the best place for me," Reed said. "I can become a better person and player. Everything stands out to me about their program, the football aspect and the academics, the graduation rate. It's an elite program. I want to be the best I can be. I want to play with the best."

More decisions are on the horizon.

Raekwon McMillan, a five-star linebacker from Liberty County High in Hinesville, Ga., is scheduled to announce his commitment next Monday. He is expected to choose between Alabama, Clemson and Ohio State. Johnnie Dixon, a four-star wide receiver from Dwyer High in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., plans to announce after his state championship game this weekend.

The Tide coaching staff hit the road last week, making stops in almost every part of the country, with more than 50 in-home visits. Alabama head coach Nick Saban visited several players, including Marlon Humphrey, a five-star cornerback from Hoover High; Jalen Tabor, a five-star cornerback from Friendship Collegiate Academy in Washington, D.C.; C.J.Hampton, a four-star safety and Ole Miss commitment from Meridian, Miss.; and Christian Miller, a Rivals100 linebacker from Spring Valley High in Columbia, S.C.

Saban met with Matt Elam, a three-star defensive tackle from John Hardin High in Elizabethtown, Ky., on Monday. He is scheduled to meet with McMillan this week. The staff visited top targets and visited several players already committed to Alabama.

"Coach (Mario) Cristobal told me how crucial I am to the University of Alabama and the coaching staff," said Tide commitment Ross Pierschbacher, a Rivals100 offensive tackle from Cedar Falls, Iowa. …

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