Alabama already has three, 4-star linebacker commits in the Class of 2017: VanDarius Cowan, Markail Benton and Gary Johnson. The Crimson Tide are not done at the position group, and have turned up the heat on one of their targets.
Tyler Taylor, a 4-star prospect from Lanier High School (Sugar Hill, Ga.), told SEC Country that right after Benton committed two weeks ago, Alabama has picked up its recruitment of him.
“I feel like they are pushing more now,” Taylor said. “They are trying to get the No. 1 linebacker recruiting class.”
The 6-foot-1, 213-pound prospect likes the fact that the Crimson Tide are considering him for a spot in that top class. Taylor doesn’t mind that he’ll have to compete alongside some of the best players in the country for a prime spot on the depth chart.
“Anywhere that you are going to choose, you’re going to have to compete,” Taylor said. “Especially with the ball that I’m trying to play, you’re going to have to work.”
Taylor named Alabama, Georgia, Auburn, Tennessee and Oklahoma as the schools recruiting him the hardest at the moment. He said if he had to choose one school out of that group that was pushing for his signature the hardest, it would be the Sooners.
The nation’s No. 11 inside linebacker said he speaks to members of the Sooners’ staff once every two days. The other schools reach out at least once a week.
Alabama still has plenty of linebacker targets on its board: 5-stars Dylan Moses and Baron Browning lead the way with 4-stars Nate McBride, Robert Beal and Christopher Allen rounding out the group.
Even with all of the top talent still being considered by the Crimson Tide, Taylor has been assured that if he wanted to join Alabama, he would be allowed to.
“I asked all of my top schools about a month ago if I would commit right now if they’d accept my commitment just to see what they would say,” Taylor said. “All of the schools said they would accept my commitment.”
His mother will have a big say in his decision. At this time, only four schools have really made her a priority. Georgia, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Tennessee have made sure they talk to his mother as much as they talk to him.
Alabama does not communicate much with her, but he’d like them to start.
If the Crimson Tide staff want him in this class, that may be the key.
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.