Welcome to SEC Country’s daily Auburn Tigers football recruiting notebook with Auburn recruiting beat writer Benjamin Wolk. It’s Tuesday, and SEC Country gives you three offensive line updates — a grad transfer decision, a JUCO offer and a high school visit.
UMass grad transfer to make Wednesday decision
Jack Driscoll’s recruitment will come and go swiftly.
The Massachusetts offensive lineman is set to make his grad transfer decision during the day on Wednesday, a source confirmed to SEC Country. His decision will come down to Southern Cal, UCLA or Auburn.
Driscoll took a visit to Auburn last weekend that went unreported until after the trip. 247Sports’ Keith Niebuhr first reported that trip and an upcoming decision. Driscoll then spoke with Rivals.com’s Jeffrey Lee on Tuesday to discuss Auburn’s role in the pending choice.
“My parents came with me and it was awesome,” Driscoll told Lee. “I love the guys on the team. I love the coaches. The school is incredible. It was a really good time. … I spent a lot of time with all three coaches [Gus Malzahn, Chip Lindsey and J.B. Grimes]. They made me feel welcomed and needed, and having Jarrett [Stidham] as my host was really cool.”
As previously mentioned, Driscoll’s decision comes down to Auburn and two West Coast schools.
UCLA added grad transfer offensive lineman Justin Murphy from Texas Tech on Tuesday. It’s possible the Bruins add a second grad transfer offensive line target, but probability and history tells a different story. This could be shaping up to be a USC-Auburn battle, and I’m told the Tigers feel they’re in advantageous position heading into the announcement.
Driscoll would be a meaningful pickup for a variety of reasons.
As a redshirt sophomore for UMass — yes, he’ll have two years of eligibility remaining — Driscoll started all 12 games at right tackle for the Minutemen. Driscoll received high grades from Pro Football Focus, who rated him as one of the top 5 Group of 5 tackles in 2017, ahead of previously recruited Rice grad transfer Calvin Anderson, who chose Texas.
At 6-foot-5 and 300 pounds, Driscoll has the frame to be an SEC tackle. Auburn’s potential needs at that position beyond Prince Tega Wanogho, Calvin Ashley and Austin Troxell make Driscoll a solid fit for the Tigers. The fact Stidham was his player-host indicates the immediate importance of a guy such as Driscoll. He has the flexibility to play guard, if need be.
Auburn offers JUCO lineman from Mississippi
As I wrote in the Monday notebook, Mississippi area recruiter Marcus Woodson hit the road Tuesday to check out Mississippi high schools and junior colleges. Defensive line coach Rodney Garner went along for the ride because of the high-profile defensive linemen such as Jaren Handy, Nathan Pickering, Charles Moore and Byron Young in that state.
Before they hit those prospects, however, Auburn offered a Last Chance U target.
East Mississippi C.C. offensive lineman LaQuinston Sharp reported on Twitter that he’d received an offer from Auburn.
Sharp is a relative unknown, but his size says it all. He’s a 6-foot-3, 315-pound lineman originally from Columbus, Miss. Sharp played in all 12 games a freshman at East Mississippi C.C.
Another visit for top Auburn guard target
Keiondre Jones is among Auburn’s top overall targets in the 2019 class. As far as guards go, Jones might be at the top.
If his visit schedule is any indication, the Tigers are near the top for Jones, too.
Jones made another trip to Auburn this week. It’s easy for him to make the drive over from Hogansville, Ga., which is only about 60 miles from Auburn. But this visit was Jones’ fourth known visit in the last two months. He has come for junior days, mid-week trips, weekend stops and spring practices. Name a type of visit, and Jones has experienced it on the Plains.
When Jones spoke with SEC Country recently, here’s what he had to say about Auburn.
“Being 45 minutes away from my house. It’s hard to beat that,” Jones said. “And I like Coach Grimes. I like Coach Grimes a lot. He just got there, so I’ve gotten to see what he’s like as a coach and a person. I really like him a lot. He’s more of a technician than a yeller. Maybe he’ll get onto you when he needs to, but he’s a teacher kind of guy. He said he likes the type of player I am because I’m a versatile guard or center. He thinks I’d fit in pretty well.”
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