Alabama is on the hunt for its seventh straight recruiting championship. Join us here on SEC Country for a daily recap of Alabama recruiting news, insight on what’s happening behind the scenes, and for a glimpse at what’s coming next.
Stevens now planning on visiting Alabama
JaCoby Stevens has maintained since he re-committed to LSU in August that he would only take one official visit, and that would be to the school he’s committed to. That’s no longer the case.
Stevens, a 5-star safety from Oakland High School (Murfreesboro, Tenn.), told SEC Country on Tuesday night that he will take an official visit to Alabama in the near future. A date for that trip has not been set yet, but him visiting Tuscaloosa is significant because the Tide finished second in his recruitment.
So, why the change? Stevens said the coaching change has been weighing on his mind.
“Les Miles was fired,” Stevens said for why he decided to readjust his travel plans.
Even after Miles was fired, the U.S. Army All-American said he would only be taking one visit, so there’s likely more to this trip than Miles being fired, but Stevens did not elicit a further response.
Here’s what he had to say back in October about why he believed only one visit was necessary:
“I know it (LSU) is the right choice for me. I don’t need to be persuaded otherwise,” Stevens said at the time. “All (the other schools) had their chance when I de-committed. I told them it was a big summer and I was actually leaning toward two other schools. I did my research in those two schools and they did a great job of recruiting me and persuading me otherwise, but LSU has always had a special place in my heart, and I listened to it.”
Before his decision to re-commit to LSU, Alabama led for several weeks. If he does go through with this visit, things could certainly get interesting; however, if we are to believe Stevens at his word, he did say that the only way he would change his commitment is if Tigers defensive backs coach Corey Raymond left the program. He’s also very close with director of player personnel Austin Thomas.
Alabama has kept recruiting him ever since he committed, so to get him back on campus with a chance to flip Stevens would be huge for the Tide. Safety is one of Alabama’s biggest needs in the Class of 2017, and Stevens is considered to be the top target for the Tide.
Wills visiting for the Iron Bowl
There have been a wide variety of discrepancies as to when 4-star offensive tackle Jedrick Wills will visit Alabama.
SEC Country’s Joe Mussatto caught up with Wills on Monday, and the recruit told him that he will take an official visit to Alabama for the Iron Bowl. He was expected to take an official visit to Tennessee this weekend, but that will not happen.
Wills looked like a lock for Alabama’s class this summer, but I do not expect him to commit to the Tide as of today. I was told Wills is set on playing tackle in college, but Alabama is recruiting him at guard. That’s a big sticking point on why he decided to hold off on making a decision.
Small note on Wade
We reported two weeks ago that 5-star Ohio State cornerback commit Shaun Wade was going to take an official visit to Alabama for the Iron Bowl. At the time, it didn’t look likely that at least one member of his family would make the trip with him, but that will happen.
Jeremy Birmingham of Landof10.com reports that Wade will make the trip with his mother. That’s important because she is an Alabama fan. It looked like no family members were going to make the trip as of two weeks ago because the Wades have family coming to Jacksonville, Fla., where they live, for Thanksgiving weekend.
Again, this recruitment is only an Ohio State-Alabama race. Despite Wade and other sites mentioning Florida and Virginia Tech, this is a two-team race and has been for months.
All rankings are provided by the 247Sports composite unless otherwise noted.
Follow Chris on Twitter for the latest on who’s on their way to play in Bryant-Denny.