Ryan Johnson, a four-star defensive end from St. Paul’s Episcopal (Mobile, Ala.), visited Alabama and Auburn on back-to-back days earlier this week. One of the rivals impressed him more than the other.
“I liked sitting down with both coaches and getting a feel for the staffs,” Johnson said of his visits. “I think I liked Alabama more. Just seeing how they practice and how they work was impressive.
“I like the business feel of Alabama. They produce a lot of players that end up going to the NFL. They also produce a lot of players that get degrees. They have a very high graduation rate.”
When Johnson visited Alabama, several Crimson Tide coaches showed him the defensive line depth chart in hopes of getting him on board.
“They were asking me if I was going to commit that day,” Johnson told SEC Country. “(Defensive coordinator Jeremy) Pruitt was showing me a lot of love. He recruited me pretty hard at Georgia, and that’s definitely carried over.”
Not only did Pruitt try to get Johnson to commit, but so did defensive line coach Bo Davis and Nick Saban himself.
“It definitely made me feel special, but I know I’m not ready to make any decisions yet,” Johnson said. “I’m just taking the process slowly. I don’t want to rush into anything.”
The 6-foot-4, 253-pounder hasn’t made his top school public, but did mention Alabama, Auburn, Duke, Stanford and Clemson as some of the schools he’s strongly considering.
Where does Alabama stand with him after his most recent visit?
“They definitely put themselves in a great position, but I wouldn’t call them my favorite school just yet,” Johnson said.
Johnson said he would like to make a commitment before his senior season. He is rated as the nation’s No. 4 defensive end.
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.