Welcome to SEC Country’s daily Roll Tide-ings , a rundown of everything happening in Alabama Crimson Tide recruiting with Chris Kirschner. Today, we talk the latest with Alabama’s possible No. 1 overall recruiting target in the 2018 class.
Tyson Campbell working with unofficial top 5
There may not be a more important recruiting target for Alabama this year than 5-star cornerback Tyson Campbell.
Campbell, the nation’s No. 3 cornerback from American Heritage High School (Plantation, Fla.), told SEC Country’s Sam Spiegelman that Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, Miami and Ohio State are the main schools that are jockeying for his commitment.
The U.S. Army All-American said he wants to visit Alabama, Georgia and Ohio State this fall for a game. He’s also planning on being at Miami’s Nov. 14 game against Notre Dame.
“After [I take those visits], I should have my No. 1 top school,” Campbell said.
Alabama had all of the buzz this summer when he visited. That has died down some because he hasn’t visited Tuscaloosa since July, but there remains some optimism from sources close to the Crimson Tide.
Campbell said he talks to the Alabama staff “pretty much every day.” There’s a good reason for that, too.
“Their lack of corners is pretty rare for a program like that,” Campbell said. “I feel like my class and guys that could go there would have an opportunity to [play] as freshmen and step into already a pretty prestigious program.”
The Tide will lose cornerbacks Anthony Averett, Tony Brown and Levi Wallace after this season. Ronnie Harrison and Minkah Fitzpatrick could also decide to declare for the NFL draft. That means Alabama may have to replace five starters in the secondary next season.
That may be a giant problem for the team because it didn’t sign any true corners in the Class of 2017. Kyriq McDonald is listed as a corner, but he’s likely just going to play star. The same could be said about Shyheim Carter. That leaves Trevon Diggs and Nigel Knott as the only true corners on the roster heading into 2018.
Alabama would like four to five defensive backs in this class for that reason. When asked why the schools listed above are standing out to Campbell, he mentioned the possibility of early playing time.
“I feel like their lack of depth at the corner position and the guys that they produce, they help them become better men and help them get drafted into the league,” Campbell said. “Which is one of my goals in life.”
Campbell, along with his teammate Patrick Surtain Jr., a 5-star prospect in his own right, are two of Alabama’s top overall targets in this class. Both of them have discussed the possibility of playing together, but it doesn’t look likely at this time. Surtain has called LSU his leader for more than a year now, and it seems like barring a major turn of events that he’ll be in Baton Rouge next season.
In addition to Campbell and Surtain, the Tide are strongly after Miami commit Josh Jobe, junior college prospect Saivion Smith and 4-star corner Nadab Joseph. Alabama also has a commitment from Jalyn Armour-Davis.
With Alabama desperately needing several corners in this class, I still think the team is in good shape to land Campbell when he makes his commitment on National Signing Day in February.
What to make of the Bobby Brown Crystal Ball picks
Several of you asked me on Twitter about other recruiting analysts making 247Sports Crystal Ball picks for 4-star defensive tackle Bobby Brown to choose Texas A&M when he commits on Nov. 2.
What I can say about Brown is that behind the scenes, he’s had Alabama on top of his recruitment since the summer. When I spoke to him in July, he told me he had a private leader but strongly hinted that that team was Alabama.
The Crimson Tide view Brown as their No. 1 defensive tackle target in the 2018 class. Now, Brown hasn’t visited Tuscaloosa since the summer, so that momentum Alabama may have had could have deteriorated, but those close to the program believe they’re still right in the mix to land him when he commits.
Alabama will host Brown for an official visit next weekend for the Tennessee game. He’ll then take an official visit to Texas A&M the following weekend before making his commitment just a few days later. That’s definitely worrisome if you’re Alabama, but the Crimson Tide have a golden opportunity to lock up Brown next week when he visits.
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