Alabama lost defensive linemen Jarran Reed and A’Shawn Robinson to the NFL Draft this past season. Jonathan Allen is a senior and Da’Shawn Hand could potentially declare for the draft after this year. Kendell Jones, a four-star defensive tackle signee in the 2016 class, won’t enroll at Alabama after failing to qualify.
Needless to say, depth on the defensive line is thin.
But for Isaiah Buggs, that’s a good thing. Buggs, a three-star defensive lineman from Mississippi Gulf Coast College who is considered the team’s No. 1 junior college target, is strongly considering Alabama because of the team’s thin depth chart.
“Looking at their roster and seeing they’re losing everybody helps because they’re looking for someone who can step in immediately and be that guy,” Buggs told SEC Country. “Considering that I only have two years of eligibility left to play, that means I have to find somewhere where I can come in right away and play.”
Alabama is looking at Buggs at both defensive tackle and defensive end. The 6-foot-5, 280-pounder said he closely examines who’s on the defensive lines of the teams he considers.
“It’s all about looking at the roster and seeing who will be returning and who is coming in because you want to play right away,” Buggs said.
Buggs said he will “definitely” take an official visit to Alabama at some point during the season. He claims no leaders at this point, but he did say the Tide was in that top group.
It’s a good thing that a decision doesn’t have to be made right now for Buggs, because he has no idea which school he’d attend if he had to make up his mind today.
“It’s a really hard decision for me,” Buggs said. “If signing day was today, I would probably have to extend my recruitment some more because I have no idea what I want to do. I’m just ready to work hard when I do choose that school and make sure my name is known.”
Buggs will be a midyear graduate, which means he’ll graduate from Mississippi Gulf Coast in December and will be able to enroll in the school of his choice this January.
All rankings are provided by the 247Sports composite unless otherwise noted.
Chris Kirschner covers Alabama football recruiting for SECCountry.com and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Follow him on Twitter for the latest on who’s on their way to play in Bryant-Denny.