Jacoby Stevens is a workout warrior, so, of course, the best part of his visit to Alabama last week centered around what he does best — working out.
Stevens, a 5-star safety from Oakland High School (Murfreesboro, Tenn.), told SEC Country that he had a chance to work out in the Crimson Tide’s indoor facility with defensive backs coach Derrick Ansley and offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin.
“I got a lot of good feedback from Coach Ansley. He and Coach Kiffin said I did really well,” Stevens said. “Those guys gave a nice head nod to my game.”
Stevens was under a watchful eye from Ansley. Stevens said Ansley called him one of the best defensive backs he’s seen this year. Ansley has been recruiting Stevens ever since he was at Kentucky and the recruit was a freshman in high school.
“He really wants me,” Stevens said of Ansley. “He can see that I have a lot of talent and I could be very good under his coaching and reach my goals and dreams with his help. He also reminded me that he was recruiting me when he was at Kentucky and I was a freshman. Our relationship goes way back.”
But even with Ansley having a longstanding relationship with Stevens, so do several other coaches in his top 7, such as Auburn’s Rhett Lashlee, Georgia’s Mel Tucker and LSU’s Austin Thomas. At one point, the Bulldogs were Stevens’ leader. They no longer hold the top spot. Every school is on an equal level.
The nation’s No. 1 safety is playing his recruitment close to the vest.
“Alabama is a pretty good school. It’s a school that I am definitely considering at this point,” Stevens said. “I can’t really say what Alabama’s chances of getting me are. I can’t say it’s a great or bad chance right now because I need to go back in the lab and compare all of the schools.”
He plans on making trips to Tennessee, Clemson and LSU before he makes a commitment, which he says will happen next month. He said a commitment will be made to one of his seven schools: Alabama, Auburn, Georgia, Tennessee, LSU, Clemson and Florida State.
“Every school is just about the same,” Stevens said. “They all have former NFL players, especially in the SEC. The facilities are out of this world, which help the players out. They have athletic trainers and nutritionists. So I would say that Alabama offers the same things that these other SEC schools offer.”
It’s going to be a battle for Alabama to win his commitment, but the Crimson Tide are squarely in the mix now after his visit to Tuscaloosa.
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.