BEAVERTON, Ore. — The Opening Finals officially kicked off on Thursday from Nike World Headquarters, and Day 1 featured quarterbacks, wide receivers and tight ends.
Alabama is still looking for its 2018 quarterback, and we caught up with three major targets on Thursday.
Here’s what we learned:
Justin Fields told SEC Country earlier this month that he wasn’t really considering the Crimson Tide much because he didn’t talk to the staff as often as he did with other schools.
Despite that, Fields visited Tuscaloosa last weekend. Things have changed.
“I just love the way (offensive coordinator) Coach (Brian) Daboll coaches,” Fields told SEC Country at The Opening. “Of course, they are going to contend for national championships every year. They also have most of the best players in college football. Just getting to practice with those guys every day is going to get you better.”
The good news for the Tide is Fields is now talking about extending his recruitment into the fall and potentially taking some official visits before making a commitment. Originally, Fields wanted to make a decision on his future school before his season began. The further his recruitment goes on, the better it is for Alabama’s chances. The Tide have some ground to make up, so the delay offers time to catch up to schools like Auburn, Florida, Florida State and Georgia.
Five-star QB Matt Corral‘s interesting comment on Brian Daboll
Matt Corral, the nation’s No. 2 pro-style quarterback, is expected to make his first visit to Tuscaloosa on July 21 for Alabama’s Champions Cookout. Even though he hasn’t stepped foot on campus, he’s impressed with the team.
That’s mainly because of offensive coordinator Brian Daboll, who recently sent Corral a picture of his five Super Bowl rings.
“Tom Brady was his guy,” Corral said. “If I want to be as good as I want to be, I’m going to learn under Coach Daboll.”
Corral is in an interesting spot. It is anticipated that Georgia is the favorite for Corral, however, the Bulldogs also likely have 5-star QB Justin Fields at the top of their board. If Fields goes elsewhere, then Corral would likely be the choice for Georgia.
There has been some chatter that Georgia could potentially land both Fields and Corral. But Corral says that isn’t likely.
“I don’t think that will happen,” Corral said.
If he goes through with his visit to Alabama, he’s definitely one to watch moving forward.
Five-star QB Tanner McKee still considering Alabama
Tanner McKee won’t play college football until 2020 because he’s taking a two-year Mormon mission trip after graduation. That hasn’t stopped Alabama and many other schools from recruiting him as if he’ll play next season.
McKee told SEC Country at The Opening that he’s talking to Daboll at least every other day and he also spoke with head coach Nick Saban last week.
McKee visited Tuscaloosa in March and at the time said he could “absolutely” see himself playing for Alabama.
Not much has changed since then.
“They’re obviously a great program,” McKee said. “They’re a winning program. Coach Saban has done a phenomenal job over the years. They brought in Coach Daboll, and now they want to sling the ball around like the Patriots. It’s really exciting for them. I’m excited to see how they do.”
- Four-star wide receiver commit Xavier Williams dropped some passes that could have been caught. That’s an issue of his that has been seen at other camps. He needs to work on his hands.
- Five-star wide receiver target Justyn Ross was very fluid in drills and made a nice one-handed catch. He had a very good day.
Check out more thoughts and some questions-and-answers from our readers on our Alabama Insiders Facebook page: