Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

UA RECRUITING: Bama-LSU Rivalry Includes Recruiting, Too

Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

UA RECRUITING: Bama-LSU Rivalry Includes Recruiting, Too

Article excerpt

The Alabama-LSU game has turned into one of the most intense rivalries in the SEC. The two programs have turned in some memorable games, with the Crimson Tide on a four-game winning streak. The two teams also battle for a lot of the same high-profile prospects from across the country.

Alabama will host more than 140 players Saturday, with a high majority strongly considering the Crimson Tide across the different recruiting classes. The coaches will have their focus on the game against the Tigers, but also plenty of recruiting activities throughout the day.

Prospects and fans from across the country, regardless of their allegiances, will turn to CBS at 7 p.m. Saturday to watch the heavyweight SEC matchup. ESPN's College GameDay returns to Tuscaloosa and is likely to bring some celebrity attention, whether it's a music star or professional athlete. LeBron James, Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez are among the high-profile athletes who have been on campus for the game against the Tigers.

Coaches who were on Alabama's staff in 2011 remember the huge number of prospects who were in Tuscaloosa for that LSU game. The players who have been invited and are expected for this game will come very close to topping the group four years ago, and certainly the best overall group in Tuscaloosa this year.

Alabama is not giving tickets to just any top players who want to attend. These are players who have been heavily recruited by the Crimson Tide coaching staff for several months. A high majority of the class of 2016 prospects who will be in town have Alabama in their top five or top three lists of schools. Many in the 2017 and 2018 classes have early offers from Alabama and are strongly considering the program.

Alabama will host at least three official visitors, and the number will likely grow by the end of the week. The early list is Greg Little, a five-star offensive tackle from Allen High School in Texas; Isaac Nauta, a five-star tight end from IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. …

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