Welcome to SEC Country’s daily Roll Tide-ings, a rundown of everything happening in Alabama Crimson Tide recruiting with Chris Kirschner. Today, we discuss the latest with 5-star wide receiver Justyn Ross and the state of Alabama’s top running back, Asa Martin.
Daboll’s first task with Justyn Ross resonates with 5-star prospect
PHENIX CITY, Ala. — During one of the first conversations Brian Daboll had with 5-star wide receiver Justyn Ross, the new offensive coordinator made sure to get Charay Franklin’s number.
Franklin is Ross’ mother, but she hasn’t gone on any recruiting trips with him yet. That’s because she’s stationed in Kuwait with the National Guard as a truck driver, and shortly after getting deployed, Ross’ recruitment really took off. Franklin hasn’t been kept out of the loop on her son’s recruitment, even though she’s across the globe.
“We talk about it all of the time,” Ross told SEC Country. “Whenever I go on a visit, she always asks me what I liked about it. I always tell her how much I like the environment and how much I like being around the people.”
Ross only mentioned Alabama and Florida State as the schools who have consistently talked to his mother. That’s important because he says he doesn’t need to go into too much detail on those 2 schools when he talks to her about them because she already knows what their message is to him.
Both Derrick Ansley, who is Ross’ primary recruiter, and Daboll have talked to Franklin.
“When (Daboll) got there, he was asking me about my background,” Ross said. “I told him that my mom was overseas and he said he wanted to communicate to her.
“That’s really important. I want her to be comfortable with the school I pick, too. Her getting a good relationship with the coaches is very important to me.”
One of the reasons why Ross is waiting until National Signing Day to make his commitment is because he wants to take his mother on several recruiting trips before making a commitment. He admits that not only does he need to be comfortable with the school he picks, but she needs to be as well.
Alabama, Auburn, Florida State and Clemson have been the schools he’s felt comfortable at since he became a national recruit. Clemson is the latest school to host Ross on a visit and there’s no doubt that the Tigers made an impression on him.
Shortly after the visit, Ross tweeted that the visit was one of the best he’s ever been on.
“I liked it a lot,” Ross said. “Their facilities are like a dream. The coaches are really nice, too. I can relate to them a lot. I just wanted to see how they act around me and see if it feels like home there.”
The only other time he’s had that reaction to a visit was the first time he went to Florida State.
There are several people around the state of Alabama who believe that Ross’ recruitment is strictly an Iron Bowl battle, but that’s not the case at all. Clemson and Florida State are true threats to pluck away one of the best prospects in the nation from either Alabama or Auburn.
Why Asa Martin feels like he doesn’t fit in with Alabama
DECATUR, Ala. — Asa Martin is one of the nation’s top 10 running backs and the highest-ranked tailback in the state of Alabama in the Class of 2018, but it’s highly unlikely he’ll end up with the Crimson Tide.
Florida currently leads for the 4-star prospect, with Auburn running in second place. Daboll has reached out to Martin since arriving in Tuscaloosa. Daboll told Martin multiple times that he wanted him to visit when the prospect had his spring break, but Martin couldn’t make it.
It’s not likely he makes it to Tuscaloosa in the near future. The interest level in Alabama isn’t very high.
“I just don’t really know. … I just don’t think it really fits my style very much,” Martin told SEC Country. “The style of running back I am, I don’t really feel like I fit into that style of offense.
“I’m more like of an open-type, shotgun offense. Spread style.”
Alabama has a commitment from 4-star running back Dameon Pierce in the Class of 2018. The Tide would like to add 5-star prospect Zamir White, too, but it’s unlikely he ends up committing to Alabama when he makes his decision this June. If the Tide miss on him, it’s unclear if and who they’ll go after. Running back isn’t a priority to Alabama this year after signing 2 of the nation’s best last cycle in Najee Harris and Brian Robinson. Both players have been 2 of the best standouts in spring practice.