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Alabama vs Kentucky: Recruiting Battle for Matt Elam

Bama fans hope to be cheering for Matt Elam in 2014.
Bama fans hope to be cheering for Matt Elam in 2014.
John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

The Crimson Tide will lock horns with the Kentucky Wildcats on the football field on Saturday but another battle has been raging between the two teams for several months. That fight is for the signature of defensive tackle Matt Elam to the Class of 2014.

Elam stands at 6-6 and weighs between 325-350 lbs. As you can tell from his player's reel. He is very fleet afoot for a man his size. When he gets his hands on a runner, he does not let go.

Elam reportedly has the Tide and UK as his two finalists but has not eliminated Louisville, Notre Dame, Tennessee or Ohio State.

The reason a losing program like Kentucky is neck-and-neck with the back-to-back National Champs is because Elam's hometown is Elizabethtown KY, a mere 90 miles to Lexington home of the Wildcats. He will have to decide if the likelihood of losing many games and proximity to home outweighs a real chance at winning a National Championship (or two or three or...) and upping his future NFL stock.

This past spring, Elam attended the Crimson Tide Junior Day and quickly caught the eyes of most onlookers. He received an offer on the spot and moved from a three-star to four-star shortly thereafter.

Nick Saban and staff project him as the next "clogger" of the middle in the fashion of Terrence "Mount" Cody. It is possible that Elam could come in and start at nose tackle as soon as 2014.

An in-home visit from the Crimson Tide staff is expected this week as well as a show of strength at Commonwealth Stadium on Saturday night as Alabama faces off with the Wildcats 6pm CT (ESPN2). Hopefully, this young man can see the potential Bama holds that UK does not.

Elam will make his official visit to Tuscaloosa on December 20.