Welcome to SEC Country’s daily Roll Tide-ings, a rundown of everything happening in Alabama Crimson Tide recruiting with Chris Kirschner. In this edition, we talk the latest with one of Alabama’s linebacker commits.
King Mwikuta is done with his recruitment
ROSWELL, Ga. — King Mwikuta committed to Alabama on Dec. 15, 2017, which was his birthday. That was the final day of his recruitment. He’s locked in with the Crimson Tide and has focused on recruiting uncommitted players.
Mwikuta, a 4-star outside linebacker from Troup County High School (LaGrange, Ga.), was in Tuscaloosa on Saturday for A-Day. He patrolled the sidelines, talking to those recruits the Tide are interested in, such as 4-star defensive tackle DJ Dale, who seems close to making a commitment. Dale is one of the team’s top interior defensive line targets.
“I want him badly,” Mwikuta told SEC Country. “And he plays on the interior [defensive line]? Man, I want him. [Five-star Alabama tackle commit] Pierce [Quick] and I were talking to him. We’re going to get that done. I thought he committed on Saturday.
“And then I want [5-star UGA commit] Nolan Smith, [5-star defensive tackle] Travon Walker and [4-star safety] Trikweze Bridges. I want those guys badly. I would say we have a 1 percent chance to get Nolan. I would love to have them, though. I started this recruiting process with Nolan and Travon. And with Trikweze, I think we have a chance with him. I’m bringing him to camp with me this summer so he can get analyzed.”
When Mwikuta wasn’t talking with other recruits, he was in search for Terry Saban — coach Nick Saban’s wife. One of the first questions Mwikuta had for his future coach was where Terry was. Not seeing her was the worst part of his Saturday afternoon in Tuscaloosa.
“I didn’t get a chance to see Mrs. Terry,” Mwikuta said. “I’m mad about that. You have to put that in the story. Please say, ‘King Mwikuta is looking for Mrs. Terry.’ I love Mrs. Terry. I’m mad I didn’t see her. Please, you have to put that in the story. Terry Saban, King Mwikuta is looking for you.”
That is the kind of personality Mwikuta has. He might have the biggest personality I’ve seen since I started covering recruiting in 2015. He’s going to say whatever is on his mind, and it’s usually done with a smile on his face.
Such as when he explained why Quick, who is certainly one of the best peer recruiters the Tide have had in recent memory, needs to slow down so Mwikuta can start getting some commitments on his own.
“Coach Saban has told me that he wants me to be one of the leaders of this class,” Mwikuta said. “I’ve been trying to get these guys, but Pierce has been getting more than me. He needs to slow down. It’s all good, man, that’s my boy.”
Since Mwikuta committed to the Tide, other schools have backed off recruiting him. Mwikuta said he believes that those coaches can see he’s 100 percent locked in with Alabama. The only coach he mentioned who is still trying to come after him is Florida defensive line coach and former Alabama linebackers coach Sal Sunseri. Mwikuta said Sunseri hits his phone up from time to time.
“He tells me what’s up and I tell him what’s up, too. It’s a respect thing,” Mwikuta said. “If I see these coaches, though, I thank them for recruiting me because you do want to have various options when you do make your decision.”
As a true sign to really show his recruitment is over with, Mwikuta will not use all five of his official visits. He will only take one — to Alabama — this fall.
“Why would I take official visits to other schools when you already know where you’re going?” Mwikuta rhetorically asked.
He’s now focused on getting Alabama back on top of the recruiting rankings. The Tide have the No. 4 class in the country, but there’s a good chance the Tide end up back at No. 1 come February, especially if Mwikuta has it his way.
“Oklahoma has the No. 1 class in the country right now, but we got some things in the bag for that. It’s all good. We’re going to have the top class,” he said.
NFL draft note
Keep an eye on several top prospects Thursday night tweeting about receiving a FaceTime call from Nick Saban from the NFL draft. This is something Saban does every year, and this year will be no different.
Saban’s usual spiel to the recruits is that if they go to Alabama, that they, too, will have a chance to be on stage in three to four years.
We all know Saban never misses an opportunity to recruit, and Thursday night will be no different.
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