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 top wide receiver targets.
John Metchie is a name for Alabama fans to know
John Metchie has had an interesting path to being one of the nation’s top wide receivers in the 2019 class. Metchie was born in Taiwan then moved to Ghana and then Canada where he was until his freshman year of high school at St. James School (Hagerstown, Md.).
Metchie, a 4-star prospect, is one of the Crimson Tide’s top targets at wide receiver. Alabama happens to be in good shape to land his commitment when he makes his decision near the start of his senior season.
“Right now, I don’t really have a list of favorite schools, but I would say that it’s Alabama and Penn State at the top,” Metchie told SEC Country. “Those two, specifically, it comes down to the relationships I have there with the coaching staff. I am close with [wide receivers coach Josh] Gattis at Alabama and [Penn State wide receivers] Coach [David] Corley. Those relationships are on the next level in my recruitment.”
Metchie’s relationship with Gattis dates back to when the Alabama assistant was coaching receivers at Penn State. The 6-foot, 185-pound prospect was one of Gattis’ top targets for the Nittany Lions, and he’s now a top target for him with the Tide.
“Now that he’s at Alabama, I still have a great relationship with Coach Gattis,” Metchie said. I’ve also built a strong relationship with Coach [Mike] Locksley, too. Coach Gattis was recruiting me very hard at Penn State, and that hasn’t changed now that he’s at Alabama. I talk to talk to him pretty much every other day.”
The nation’s No. 41 wide receiver said in addition to speaking with Gattis every other day, he’s also talking the same amount to Locksley. Metchie said Gattis and Locksley see him being a versatile receiver who can line up in the slot and on the outside.
The state of Maryland’s No. 6 overall prospect hasn’t been to Tuscaloosa before, but he’s ‘definitely’ going this summer, whether that’s an official or unofficial visit.
Not only is he talking with Gattis and Locksley at Alabama, but he’s also speaking to Tide quarterback commit Paul Tyson. Tyson, who along with 5-star tackle Pierce Quick, is one of the team’s best peer recruiters. And, something that I think shows Metchie’s legitimate interest in Alabama, he’s watched both Tyson’s and Taulia Tagovailoa’s film and think both are “extremely special.”
“Paul has just been telling me that it’s the place to be,” Metchie said. “If I would go there, it would be something special. He has been trying to get me to come down there to see how great of a place it is.”
Metchie, who has been clocked at 4.45 seconds in the 40-yard dash, thinks the current quarterback competition in Tuscaloosa between Jalen Hurts and Tua Tagovailoa is a great problem for Alabama to have. And it’s one that makes him believe that if he did go to Alabama next season, he would be guaranteed at least one year with either Hurts or Tagovailoa who he considers both excellent quarterbacks.
Metchie also likes how Alabama has developed its wide receivers over the years whether it was Julio Jones or Amari Cooper or Calvin Ridley. Two of those former wideouts happen to be Metchie’s favorite players at the position.
“Calvin Ridley was my favorite college receiver, and it was Amari Cooper before him,” Metchie said. “I definitely like the way Alabama builds receivers, so that’s a big thing for me.”
Penn State has been viewed as the favorite because of all the trips he has taken to State College, Pa., but Metchie said he’s “strongly considering Alabama as much as I am Penn State.”
“There’s so much competition there,” Metchie said. “I love to compete, so I feel like why not go to the most competitive program in the country? I think that’s the biggest reason for my interest in Alabama.”
Position clarification for Devonta Lee
Last week, we wrote a story on Devonta Lee, a 4-star wide receiver from Amite (La.) High School. Lee is one of the team’s top targets in the 2019 class and has the versatility to play receiver or safety in college.
In that story, we mentioned that Alabama also likes him at safety. After talking to a source, it seems like that interest in Lee on the defensive side is legit. And it seems like the team currently likes him more at safety than wide receiver.
Just last year, Slade Bolden, a 3-star athlete from Louisiana, was recruited to play slot wide receiver for the Tide only to be moved to safety when he got to Tuscaloosa. So, just because the team may like Lee more at safety right now, it doesn’t mean that playing receiver down the line for the Tide would be out of the question.
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