Alabama Crimson Tide 2014 Recruiting Update: LSU Weekend

Roll Tide. - John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Before we get into November 9th, let’s review the Alabama-Tennessee weekend in which two high-profile recruits were in town: Atlanta 4-star DT Elisha Shaw (6-6/300) and 5-star DE/Jack Da’Shawn Hand (6-4/254) from Woodbridge, VA. Both recruits were said to have had a great time. The weather was perfect, the fans were loud, and the Crimson Tide trounced the Vols.

Alabama made quite an impression on Shaw as he considers Alabama with UGA and Ole Miss. He may return to Tuscaloosa for the LSU game on November 9th as well.

Hand came away very impressed with the University of Alabama’s academic presentation in which he met with the Dean of Engineering as well as representatives of the Business school. Academics is an important aspect towards getting his commitment. He is also considering Michigan and Florida. Most recruiting sites have him in the overall Top 5, some as #1. Hand is one of those elite athletes that can come in and contribute right away. His signature would be HUGE. He is supposed to announce his college choice on November 14.

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November 9th

The LSU game is going to be a big one for Alabama's 2013 season but it is also going to be the biggest recruiting weekend of the year. Scheduled to appear:

Leonard Fournette RB (6-0/225) 5-star New Orleans, LA - Elite athlete, the nation's #1 RB. LSU lean.
Matt Elam NT (6-6/325) 4-star Elizabethtown, KY - Home state team with a history of losing or team that has won 3 of the last 4 National Championships 5 hours from home?
Marlon Humphrey CB (6-0/185) 5-star Hoover, AL -Visited Bama this past weekend and plans to return for the LSU game. Has shown renewed interest in FSU. He may not want to live in the shadow of his dad, Bobby Humphrey, at Bama.
Laurence "Hootie" Jones, Safety (6-2/210) 4-star Monroe, LA - Good friends with Bama commits Cameron Robinson and Cameron Sims. Deciding between Bama and LSU.
C.J. Hampton Safety (6-2/195) 4-star Meridian, MS - Committed to Ole Miss but Saban & staff love this kid and they are working him.
Tyler Luatua TE/HB (6-3/235) 4-star La Mirada, CA - Younger brother of current Alabama offensive guard Isaac Luatua. He may have waited too long to commit. Also likes Notre Dame.
Viane Talamaivao OG (6-3/300) 4-star Corona, CA - Current Alabama commit is friends with the Luatua brothers.
Davion Hall Safety (6-2/186) 4-star Texarkana, TX - A soft commitment to Baylor also looking at Bama, Texas A&M, and Arkansas.
Johnnie Dixon WR (6-0/175) 4-star West Palm Beach, FL - Not sure if there is room for a third WR in this class but the staff did like him a lot at one time. Miami seems to be the frontrunner.
Marcelys Jones OG (6-4/350) 4-star Cleveland, OH - He is an Ohio State commit but the UA staff has been very high on him. Not sure how Josh Casher's recent commitment will effect his recruitment.
Marshon Lattimore CB (6-0/185) 4-star Cleveland, OH - Teammate of Marcelys Jones is also looking at Ohio State. Head coach of these two is the legendary Ted Ginn Sr. father of former Buckeye and current Carolina Panther Ted Ginn Jr.
Raekwon McMillan LB (6-2/245) 5-star Hinesville, GA - The nation's top ILB likes Bama, Clemson, Florida, UGA, and (ugh) Ohio State. I would love to get this kid but I am not optimistic.

December 13th

Jalen Tabor (6-0/180) is a 4-star CB from Washington, DC. He has been pretty high on Maryland for awhile now but after a 4-0 start the Terps have turned back into the Terps (or the Derps?) losing 3 of their last 4. Tabor has scheduled his official visit to Tuscaloosa for December 13. Florida appears to be in the running as well but not as high as Alabama and Maryland. He plans to announce his choice at the Under Armour All-America Game January 2nd.

The Numbers

You might be wondering how Alabama is going to work these numbers to get to 25. Truth be told, there are probably less then 8 people in the world who know for sure. Thanks to student privacy rules, nobody outside of the select circle will ever know the whole story.

First, there is back-counting which allows schools to count this year’s signees against the previous year’s class. Those back-counted would have to be early enrollees who start classes in January. If you want to know how back-counting works, start by looking here.

Secondly, there is always the possibility that signees do not academically qualify. There are a few current Tide commitments who might be in trouble but I'd rather not speculate at this time.

Thirdly, there are flippers. Believe it or not, some guys may flip away from the Tide. CB Stephen Roberts (6-1/180) committed to Alabama back in April but has been spending a lot of time at Auburn lately. It could simply be because Auburn is close to his hometown of Opelika, AL. He was planning to visit Alabama this past weekend but did not show. Auburn continues to recruit him hard.

Finally, there are greyshirts in which a player agrees to delay his enrollment until the following January and become part of the next year's class. In this coming class, it would mean a January 2015 enrollment. In recent years, Alabama asked Harrison Jones and Bradley Bozeman to greyshirt. In both instances, the greyshirt turned out to be not necessary through attrition of others.

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