Welcome to SEC Country’s daily Auburn Tigers football recruiting notebook with Auburn recruiting beat writer Benjamin Wolk. It’s Thursday, and SEC Country chats with a 3-star cornerback who recently de-committed from an in-state school. Also, here’s another change to a top DE’s official visit plans.
On-the-rise in-state CB reacts to Auburn offer, sets OVs
Roger McCreary received his Auburn offer just this week, but his relationship with the program goes back to earlier in the year.
As a South Alabama cornerback commit, McCreary visited The Plains for a summer camp. McCreary said he didn’t have much familiarity with Auburn (and vice versa) when he made that trip. But that all changed during that visit.
RELATED: 2018 Auburn recruiting big board
Throughout the season, linebackers coach Travis Williams stayed in regular contact with McCreary. As the Tigers’ recruiting class took shape, there was (and continues to be) a glaring need at cornerback. All the more reason Auburn remained in the loop with McCreary, including hosting him for the Georgia and Alabama games.
When the in-home visit period hit, Williams stopped by Mobile, Ala., to see McCreary. Earlier this week, it was defensive coordinator Kevin Steele who went to see him. The next day, Williams called with the offer.
“By me going to the camp, that’s when they started communicating with me throughout the season. They invited me to their games against Alabama and Georgia. I talked to coach T-Will. He came to visit me last week and talked to me about how the process was going. Coach Steele came Monday and talked about my film and what he thinks I can bring. That’s when Coach Williams called and said they wanted to offer me,” McCreary said. “I was just excited.”
The lone caveat: He was still committed to South Alabama.
But not for long. McCreary de-committed from South Alabama on Tuesday morning, a move which had to be expected by the Jaguars’ coaching staff. There aren’t any immediate decisions to be made, but with multiple Power 5 programs entering the picture, McCreary knew he needed to be honest about where South Alabama stood.
Now, McCreary has a clear plan going forward.
“The plan is to keep my recruitment open and see where this takes me,” he said. “I’m going to wait on my officials and see what schools I end up feeling comfortable going to.”
McCreary has three official visits lined up, on three consecutive weekends.
He’ll visit Auburn on Jan. 12, then Alabama on 19 and finally Tennessee on Jan. 26. The Tide haven’t offered, but McCreary has recently been in contact with secondary coach Derrick Ansley. His communication with the Volunteers was initiated immediately after Jeremy Pruitt’s move from Alabama to Tennessee. He hasn’t been offered by Tennessee yet, either, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see that change soon.
McCreary is open to all remaining options, but he admits Auburn will have one major advantage over the rest of the competition.
“Auburn, they’ve been talking to me throughout the whole season,” McCreary said. “And then, during their games, I just really like the atmosphere. I know what the crowd’s like, and I really like that.”
Major 2018 target sets official, commitment soon?
Kayode Oladele‘s plans have been fluid the last couple weeks.
Originally, before attending the Iron Bowl, Oladele planned on taking his official visit the week after that game, the weekend of Dec. 2. But Auburn ended up in the SEC Championship Game, so that was rescheduled to the following week — visit Dec. 8-10 then commit on Dec. 12, Oladele’s 19th birthday.
That changed, too, largely because of Florida State hiring Willie Taggart. Oladele was committed to the Seminoles earlier this recruiting cycle, and there is a prior relationship there with Taggart. That gave Oladele additional pause, which is why he indicated to SEC Country last week that he might not take his official visit until January.
Well … mark him down for one last alteration (we think).
Oladele will now take his official visit to Auburn this upcoming weekend. He also hopes to be able to sign during the Dec. 20-22 early signing period, which means a commitment would likely come shortly after the official visit.
The decision timeline is subject to change, but Oladele will definitely be back on campus this weekend for an official visit. That’s a major win for the Tigers.
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