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Recruiting Update: Iron Bowl Visitors

The Crimson Tide had only two official visitors, but several important unofficial visitors as well.

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NCAA Football: Utah State at Alabama
No more home games in 2022, but plenty of football activities to be had.
Gary Cosby Jr.-USA TODAY Sports

The regular season might be over for the Crimson Tide but practice continues. Also continuing is recruiting for the Class of 2023 leading up to the Early Signing Period (ESP) on Dec. 21.

Alabama had some high profile visitors for Iron Bowl. Only one uncommitted prospect was on Official Visit (OV) but he appears to be a hard Bama lean.


  • 4-star WR Jaren Hamilton (Gainesville, FL) #280 overall - Bama is his only planned OV so far and they are the heavy favorite. He has also shown some interest in Michigan and Tennessee. He runs track and has past official times of 10.91, 11.00, and 11.17 in the 100-meter dash. Hamilton has also played some defense and returns kicks for his high school team.
  • 3-star PK Conor Talty (Chicago, IL) committed to the Tide in July. He was 17 of 21 on field goals this season with a long of 51 yards. He hit all 36 of his PAT attempts and also had a 52 yard touchdown run on a fake punt.


  • 5-star EDGE Keon Keeley (Tampa, FL) #7 was back in Tuscaloosa for Iron Bowl weekend in an unofficial capacity. His last trip to T-town was for an Official Visit during Texas A&M weekend in October. It is said he is really bonding with the Bama commits. Frankly, I am surprised this former Notre Dame commit has not pulled the trigger and committed to the Tide as of yet.
  • 5-stars DL James Smith #15 and LB Qua Russaw #31, both from Carver High School in Montgomery, were also back in town for IB. But the big news is that they are both planning to have their OVs December 9-11. Needless to say, this is a huge visit so close to the ESP. With no game on, the Tide staff will be able to give special attention to the prospects and their families. The duo has already OV’d to Florida and Georgia months ago.
  • 4-star LB Arion Carter (Smyrna, TN) #318 - A few months ago, this guy was a lesser known 3-star Memphis commit. That was until Nick Saban gave his game a look and made him a scholarship offer. Carter has been “rediscovered” and reevaluated as a 4-star and has been offered by top programs around the country - Ohio State, Southern Cal, LSU, Tennessee, Oregon, Florida, etc. He recently decommited from Memphis and has taken an OV to Ohio State (Nov 12) and plans to see Tennessee Dec. 2. He too will OV Alabama on Dec. 9.
  • 4-star DL Rueben Bain (Miami, FL) #89 OV’d Alabama in the summer and was back this weekend on his own dime. It is hard to get a read on this guy but it could be the Tide has him on a wait-and-see.
  • 4-star TE Lawson Luckie (Norcross, GA) #199 - This prospect committed to Georgia back in January but then OV’d UGA and Alabama in June. There is some buzz around him since this weekend was his second unofficial trip to T-town after an Oct. 8 visit. He has not been back to Athens, GA that anyone in the crootin’ world has reported. His dad, Mike Luckie, played at UGA along with his two triplets brothers in the 1990s. However, he is not pushing his son one way or the other.
  • 4-star DL Kelby Collins (Gardendale, AL) #74 - It was odd that he made his pledge to Florida in June and odder that he keeps showing up on the UA campus without arranging an OV. It very well could be that the Bama staff might have moved on from him after he said “I do” to the Gators.
  • 4-star CB CJ Blocker (New Caney, TX) #419 - Recently decommited from Utah, this guy has been a hot topic around the crootin’ circles. He may have a reevaluation coming his way. After being in town this past weekend, he will OV Southern Cal and TCU in December. He has nothing lined up with Bama just yet.
  • 4-star CB Damari Brown (Fort Lauderdale, FL) #181 - One last unofficial visitor of note was this corner from Patrick Surtain II’s high school, American Heritage. He already OV’d the Capstone back in the summer and appears to be down to Bama and Miami.

Alabama has 23 commits and will be looking to add more, perhaps as many as 30 if things fall that way. The Crimson Tide have the No. 1 ranked class.