Alabama got a commitment from a Class of 2023 quarterback from Louisiana.
Eli Holstein made his pledge Tuesday morning in what’s been a fascinating recruiting saga surrounding the passers vying to replace Bryce Young. It adds intrigue to the speculation surrounding No. 1 prospect, Arch Manning, who is scheduled to make an official visit to Alabama on June 10.
Holstein is the No. 54 overall prospect in the 2023 class and the No. 8 quarterback, according to the 247Sports composite.
The big news from yesterday is that Alabama secured the commitment of QB Eli Holstein. The Louisiana product was once a Texas A&M commit, but has been considered a favorite for the Crimson Tide for quite a few weeks now.
As the #54 overall recruit, he’s a solid 4-star player with a shot at becoming a 5-star in his senior season. Most impressive, though, was his athletic testing at the Elite 11:
Elite 11 Las Vegas • Top Testing Rating— Elite11 (@Elite11) May 1, 2022
Zachary HS (LA)
>> 4.64 40YD
>> 4.19 SH
>> 38.3” VJ
>> 45.5’ PB
>> 133.56 Rating pic.twitter.com/f13QfBgWat
These are absolutely nutty test numbers for someone his size. That exact same spread of tests would have me absolutely drooling over a linebacker. And for a QB? Just insane. Here’s the scouting report from 247:
“Solidly built with the requisite height/size for the position. Good tester with proven athleticism in a combine setting. Effective in the short-to-intermediate passing game thanks to plus velocity. Typically accurate and consistent to those levels. Not a true dual-threat QB but a functionally athletic runner when necessary. More of a pocket/pro-style QB by nature who shows occasional improvisational ability when required. Ball placement is a strength and shows in games and 7-on-7 competition. Can push the ball downfield but sometimes needs to load up to do so. Field athleticism does not always reflect testing data. Brings the ball a bit low at times. May not have the high-end upside of some other quarterbacks in his class, but seems to be a particularly high-floor QB prospect with the potential for a safer long-term trajectory. High-major QB prospect who will arrive in college ready to compete from a physical standpoint.”
With Holstein on board, expect there to be a big push to start filling out the recruiting class once Alabama finishes up all of the camps in June.
In other news, the Tide hired a new S&C coach for the men’s basketball team:
Hired by Liberty men’s basketball head coach Ritchie McKay in 2015, Barrera paid immediate dividends and became an integral part of the program’s unprecedented success across the next seven seasons. The Flames had a combined 166 victories (166-61) over that span, which averaged out to 23.7 wins per season, and a .731 winning percentage. Liberty was equally as good in the ASUN, winning three consecutive regular season and tournament championships (2019, 2020, 2021) and boasted a .722 conference winning percentage (83-32).
In all, the Flames made five postseason appearances, including three NCAA Tournament berths, and recorded six straight 20-plus win seasons. The run was highlighted by the 2019-20 campaign in which Liberty notched a school-record 30 victories (30-4) along with the program’s first-ever NCAA Tournament win (def. Mississippi State Bulldogs 80-76 in 2019 tournament).
“I am really excited to join coach Oats and the Alabama family,” Barrera said in a release. “The history and tradition of Alabama athletics and within the men’s basketball program is powerful. My family and I are very grateful for this opportunity. We are ready to get to work. Roll Tide!”
Barrera definitely comes to Alabama with a strong pedigree. Hopefully his work can help eliminate the preseason ACL tears that have seemed to plague the team the last few years.
After catching passes from rifle-armed Patrick Mahomes for the past four years, Hill said he wasn’t sure what to expect from the left-handed Tagovailoa.
“At first, I thought it was going to be something crazy — the ball going all over the place,” Hill said. “But Tua actually has probably one of the prettiest balls I’ve ever caught in my life. It’s very catchable. I don’t want to continue because the more I talk, the more it sounds weird. Tua is a very accurate quarterback. That’s all I’m going to say.”
As an Alabama fan, it’s been so weird watching the smear campaign on Tua Tagovailoa’s arm talent from an NFL media level over the last year. Tua was always a bit of a risky prospect— a laundry list of injuries to go along with a bit of a Favre-esque hero-ball mentality meant he was plenty likely to be an NFL bust.
But that likelihood had nothing to do with his arm talent. I’m not sure I’ve ever watched a college QB throw a more accurate and catchable ball on all levels of the field. Hopefully a renewed focus from the Dolphins to actually have a functioning offense will lead to Tua being able to really breakout in year 3. Assuming he can stay healthy, of course.
Junior Savannah Woodard was another late Tuesday portal entry. The outfielder from Hayden High School started 23 games with a .164 batting average in 2022 after starting every game as a freshman and 45 games as a sophomore when she batted .292.
Junior Abby Doerr and freshman Jenna Lord entered the portal Monday while Bloodworth, Woodard, Goodnight and pitcher Lexy Kilfoyl joined them Tuesday.
The fallout from the end of season faceplant of the softball team continues, as a big chunk of the team has now entered the transfer portal. Of course, superstar Montana Fouts and a few others made it very clear that they plan to return next year. If you missed it, here’s CB969’s recap on the softball season as a whole:
That’s all there is out there today. And, hey, a top-60 recruit at QB is quite a good story to talk about.