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.
Keep an eye on Conliffe
Elijah Conliffe picked up an offer Wednesday from Alabama. It was the offer he was waiting on for a year. Shortly after the Crimson Tide extended the scholarship offer, he named Alabama his leader.
“That offer really means a lot to me,” Conliffe told SEC Country. “Alabama really has a good academic and athletic program. Their graduation rate is pretty darn high, too. That’s always a good thing. I have worked really, really hard for this offer. Last summer, I came to camp and didn’t get the offer. I came here with one goal and that was to get the offer, and that’s what I did.”
The 3-star defensive lineman from Virginia said Alabama leapfrogged Oklahoma, Ole Miss and Penn State. Why the Crimson Tide jumped pass those schools has everything to do with the goal he accomplished.
“It’s really because I had to go out and earn this offer,” Confliffe said. “It’s something I really wanted. It means a lot to me.”
The 6-foot-4, 284-pound prospect was told Alabama is planning on signing four defensive linemen in the Class of 2017. The Tide currently have one in 4-star defensive tackle Akial Byers, who is being recruited at the 3-technique. Conliffe said that’s the same position he’s being recruited at.
To get a sense of the kind of person Conliffe is, here’s what stood out most during his 15-minute conversation with Nick Saban.
“They don’t frown upon kids wanting to be engineers in the program,” Conliffe said. “There are a handful of guys on the team that are engineering majors.”
It’s a down year for defensive linemen, and it would not surprise me at all if Conliffe ends up an Alabama commit.
Loaded list of recruits headed to Tuscaloosa
Alabama will hold its invite-only Champions Cookout on Friday, and two 5-star recruits headline the group of blue-chip prospects headed to Tuscaloosa.
Isaiah Wilson, the nation’s No. 7 offensive tackle, arrives on campus Thursday and will stay through Sunday. This is Wilson’s second trip to Alabama this offseason. He made his first visit to Tuscaloosa in April for A-Day. Wilson’s recruitment is likely to come down to Michigan, Alabama, Southern California, LSU and Georgia.
JaCoby Stevens, the nation’s No. 1 athlete, will also be on Alabama’s campus this weekend. This is a giant visit for Stevens as he’s nearing a commitment that could come by the end of the month. He told SEC Country a few weeks ago that he wasn’t expecting to visit Alabama again before his commitment, so to get him back on campus is a very positive sign. Alabama, Georgia, Auburn and LSU remain in the mix.
There are several players who could potentially commit to Alabama before the weekend is over. TE Major Tennison, DB Kyriq McDonald, junior college DB Jhavonte Dean and 2018 DB Myles Mason could potentially be a part of the Crimson Tide.
The latest with JaCoby Stevens
I had several Alabama fans and readers flood my direct messages after seeing several writers project him to commit to the Crimson Tide when he makes his decision in the coming weeks.
As I have said since June 21, Alabama has quickly risen up Stevens’ list of favorites. The Tide are now in that top group alongside Georgia, LSU and Auburn. Stevens is liking Alabama more and more as the days go by.
“Alabama has been recruiting him hard and he’s liking what he’s hearing — period,” his father Jeremy Stevens told SEC Country. “This just didn’t happen this week. It is getting close to his decision and I want his mind to be clear on why he chooses a school.”
The one thing that needs to be said about Stevens is that he frequently changes his mind when it comes to his recruitment, and that’s perfectly understandable. But it can’t be stated enough, to get him on campus this weekend for the cookout is a giant positive step for the Tide’s chances.
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.