The big story of today will be the National Signing Day circus. Kicking off the week was Kadyn Proctor jumping on board with the Tide’s recruiting class. Here’s some quotes from him from 247:
“Just going in there and having that opportunity to start right away,” Proctor told 247Sports. “I’ll have to compete for it but it’s a good chance I start right away for a National Championship contending team and winning games and having fun and being the best I can be and playing against the best day in and day out.”
Proctor built a strong connection with Freddie Roach and Eric Wolford on the Alabama coaching staff and some of his buddies in the locker room include Trent Booker, JC Latham and Tyler Booker.
“I love that I’m not an outlier in the rankings,” Proctor said. He is the fourth five-star to commit to Alabama joining the nation’s No. 1 safety Caleb Downs, the top-ranked pass rusher Keon Keeley and running back Justice Haynes, and he may not be the last today with the Crimson Tide also considered the one to beat for defensive lineman James Smith and edge Qua Russaw. “There’s like-minded people, really, really good players in the class I can relate to and have great competition with.”
With Tyler Steen moving on to the NFL, there will definitely be an open spot at tackle opposite of J.C. Latham. And Alabama definitely has depth issues at the spot after Tommy Brockermeyer and Amari Kite both entered the portal.
Proctor definitely has the confidence. He’s planning on winning that starting job. And the fact that he can play with other top talent seems to be a major draw for him committing to Alabama. We’ll see if he can live up to his personal aspirations this spring.
For the rest of the recruiting news coming today, follow CB969’s main thread here on RBR.
Right on the Tide’s heels, is, of course, Georgia.
2. GEORGIA BULLDOGS
Total commits: 23 commits
Kirby Smart and Georgia are expected to land nine of the 2023 cycle’s top 100 players per 247Sports, meaning the cupboard will once again be stocked to the brim with talent in Athens. While Georgia prepares to defend its national championship in the College Football Playoff, Smart can breathe easy knowing his staff has done everything they can to secure another top-end haul. Keep an eye on Travis Hunter, the top player in the portal. Georgia is a potential destination for the Jackson State two-way threat.
Alabama’s 17 point lead on the Dogs is a pretty solid one, but things could definitely still change. If the Tide pulls the Montgomery duo, though, it’ll blow everything out of the water.
Interestingly, the Miami Hurricanes are #3. That’s a name that hasn’t been sniffing around at the top in many years.
Texas sophomore wide receiver Agiye Hall is no longer with the Longhorn football program, sources told Inside Texas. He is expected to enter the NCAA transfer portal.
Well... That one didn’t last long.
Outside of Ja’Corey Brooks, the Tide’s vaunted 2021 WR recruiting class was an utter bust. And, honestly, 2020 was too. No wonder we saw such a dropoff in the passing game this year. Here’s to hoping the trio of freshmen (the law firm... Bond, Law, and Prentice) in the 2022 class continue to build on the flashes they showed last season, and the upcoming 2023 class has some hits.
Gibbs, a junior projected as an early-round NFL draft prospect, said he never considered sitting out the bowl game because he’s never played in one. The transfer from Georgia Tech endured a pair of three-win seasons before coming to Alabama.
“It hasn’t gone as we wanted to this season,” Gibbs said Tuesday. “So, we’re trying to finish the season off right.”
While fans may get caught up in Playoff mania and forget bowls matter, some players don’t. It really made me do a double-take when he said this, and I realized just how awesome it must be for him to get to play in a Sugar Bowl after being stuck on Georgia Tech the last two years and not even make a bowl.
Also in his interview, Gibbs listed off Tyler Booker, Isaiah Bond, Kendrick Law, and Kobe Prentice as young players who were really impressing people in practice. I like the sound of that.
In hoops, the Tide survived Jackson State last night, and you can check out Roger’s recap here if you missed it.
And here are some of Nate Oats’ comments from post game:
“I thought Mark Sears’ defense in the second half was significantly better. I thought he played really hard. I thought Pringle gave us some big minutes. Brandon Miller, they weren’t letting him get off on offense. They were denying him everywhere, they were playing real physical with him and in the past, I think he’s had games where it was always a struggle and he just kind of taken a step back defensively. I didn’t think he did that today. I thought he grew up. I thought offense was difficult for him, he ends up with 14 rebounds and led us in +/-. So you’re seeing growth in different guys in different areas, which is a good thing.
“We still have the turnover issue, which we’ve gotta get fixed. But it’s good to see Quinerly back. He had five assists and only one turnover, so I think he’s starting to feel more comfortable, which will be good moving forward. We were able to get him a decent amount of minutes. Jaden Bradley with seven assists. I thought guys were moving the ball. We had a positive assist to turnover ratio. And it’s good Nick Pringle gave us some solid minutes. He ended up winning the Hard Hat Award. I thought he played really hard and gave us good minutes. We needed it.
Good stuff as the Tide winds down 2022 and gets ready for conference play.