Somewhat surprising news on the recruiting trails this evening as Alabama picks up the commitment of 2013 offensive lineman Bradley Bozeman. Per Izzy Gould:
"It felt right to me, everything is right for me there," Bozeman said.
When he let Alabama assistant Jeff Stoutland know of his decision to commit, Bozeman said Stoutland "about started to cry he was so happy."
Bozeman becomes the first commitment for the 2013 class, and said he was told he was the second one offered a scholarship.
The commitment of Bozeman comes as a bit of a surprise, admittedly. Hanley High School is less than an hour from Auburn and Randolph County in general is traditionally a pretty big Auburn territory. Zeke Knight is the only 'Bama player I can remember in my lifetime coming from that area, and as a general rule it can be assumed that any significant prospect coming out of that area will end up at Auburn. The fact that we've been able to pick up Bozeman is no small feat.
Surprise notwithstanding, the big takeaway point is that the raw talent seems to be there. 16-year old kids tipping the scales at 6'4 and 317 pounds don't just grow off trees, and we have extended almost no offers to 2013 players at this point. The fact that we were even willing to offer a scholarship and accept the commitment from Bozeman ought to clue you in on the fact that the staff thinks very highly of his potential. Obviously this is all being done on very early, limited evaluations, but the staff is nevertheless clearly convinced.
Having said all of the above, obviously we're still a long way from National Signing Day 2013, and frankly anything can happen. We'll gladly welcome Bozeman into the fold, of course, but past experience -- *cough, Brent Calloway, cough* -- ought to serve as sufficient notice that things can change quickly even with long-time commitments and that nothing is finalized until the ink dries on the dotted line. If Bozeman continues to develop like our staff clearly thinks he will, we will just have to continue to fight off Auburn and other suitors in the twenty months between now and when he can sign a letter of intent.