BUFORD, Ga. — Malcolm Askew knows three schools that will definitely be in his final five — Auburn, Ole Miss and Clemson.
But if you look at his 247Sports Crystal Ball, Alabama is the presumed favorite to gain Askew’s commitment. So why isn’t Alabama in that top three? There’s a one-word answer for that question: Family.
Auburn, Ole Miss and Clemson are known to have family-friendly environments, and that’s something Askew is looking for. He acknowledges that Alabama is not like those three schools.
“That’s pretty much one of the biggest reasons,” Askew said for why Alabama isn’t stamped into his top schools list. “My relationships with those coaches has grown stronger on those staffs than it has with Alabama.”
Askew, a four-star athlete from McAdory High School (McCalla, Ala.), acknowledged that Alabama is recruiting him differently than every other school coming after him. He did say that the Crimson Tide’s recruiting methods are not necessarily hurting the team’s chances at landing him.
“It’s business. They’re not really one of those schools that’s going to check in with you or anything like that,” Askew, who holds 39 scholarship offers, said. “If you don’t want to be a part of what they’re doing, then it’s not going to happen. They’ll just go to the next guy. They’re more of a business type of school than any other school recruiting me.”
The 6-foot, 183 pounder has a good relationship with Alabama defensive coordinator and linebacker coach Jeremy Pruitt, but he won’t be his position coach if he did go to Alabama.
Askew said he’s working on building a relationship with defensive backs coach Derrick Ansley. He admits that their relationship needs to get stronger.
“It’s not as great as it was with Coach Pruitt, but I feel like it’s building up after I talked with him and my dad,” Askew said. “I feel like it will continue to get stronger. Alabama just recruits a different way than other schools, so it’s a little different.”
Askew lists Auburn as his leader, but admits that the gap the Tigers had over other schools is shrinking.
Alabama is recruiting the state’s No. 10 overall prospect at safety. He said that benefits the Crimson Tide because the team did not sign a true safety in the Class of 2016.
Askew is rated as the nation’s No. 11 athlete, and will be an early enrollee at the school he commits to. He is planning on making a commitment at some point during his senior season.
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.