In possibly the biggest recruiting news of the year, Alabama has picked up the commitment of Trent Richardson.
Saban pursued the 5'11, 210 pound tailback from Pensacola, Florida very hard early on, and we were his leader. Suddenly, though, LSU came on strong and it looked like they may be in the lead. Richardson's mother, in particular, was a very big fan of LSU, and furthermore she liked that he would be close to his brother, who plays defensive end for Louisiana-Lafayette. Those purple and gold worries proved to be unfounded today, as Richardson suddenly committed to Nick Saban and Alabama.
For those of you unaware, Richardson is unanimously considered one of the top tailback recruits in the country. He is rated as a four-star by both major recruiting services -- the number three overall tailback in the country by Rivals, and the number seventeen overall by Scout -- and his offer list was seemingly endless. He had offers from, just to name a few, Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Florida State, LSU, Clemson, Tennessee, Texas, and Michigan, just to name a few. In all honesty, the kid could have literally gone to any school in the country, but ultimately chose the Tide.
As I said earlier, it is huge news on the recruiting front. This is a good class as it stands right now, but Richardson is probably the best of the group. There is a very good chance that he ends up a five star prospect on one, if not both, of the recruiting services. He's just an extremely exciting prospect, no two ways about it. He has great size, but by the same token he also has great top-end speed, plus plenty of acceleration and agility to boot. He may very well be the best tailback prospect we've signed in the past decade.
Want more evidence? Richardson moonlights as a track star, and actually brought home the highest finish of any Pensacola area weightlifter in a recent competition. His high school, Escambia High, is also the same school that turned out Emmitt Smith almost twenty-five years ago, and Richardson is largely considered the best prospect to come out of there since then. In his junior season, Richardson averaged over 200 yards rushing and two touchdowns per game.
Click here for a YouTube clip -- though a terribly edited one -- of some of his highlights. If you have a subscription to either Scout.com or Rivals, they both have film of him. Trust me, you will be impressed.
Long story short, the recruiting news just gets better and better for the Tide.