Welcome to SEC Country’s daily Auburn football recruiting notebook with Auburn recruiting beat writer Benjamin Wolk. Today, we talk with Auburn commit Jalil Irvin and take a look at scrimmage visitors over the weekend.
Irvin talks life after commitment
In that moment, Jalil Irvin knew.
Irvin, an uncommitted prospect at the time, stood inside Jordan-Hare Stadium with Auburn offensive line coach Herb Hand during his March 4 unofficial visit. Hand offered up a hypothetical scenario that resonated with Irvin.
It was all he needed to hear to confirm the dozens of other gut feelings he’d had in his many visits on the Plains.
“He was telling me it was the fourth quarter. It was third down with three minutes left, and we had to get a touchdown. He told me to imagine pancaking someone, and then I get off the ground and run to the sideline with everybody cheering,” Irvin told SEC Country last Sunday. “I just felt at home in that moment.”
Irvin waited a few days to make his public commitment, but he knew then.
The 6-foot-3, 296-pound offensive lineman, who likely will play guard or center for Auburn, didn’t need any more time to shop despite a half dozen of schools still chasing him. That pressure from non-Auburn recruiters hasn’t changed.
Irvin continues to gets texts and calls from several programs — Ohio State, Mississippi State, Florida and LSU — but his heart is at Auburn.
“It’s still kinda hectic. There’s still a lot of schools that are trying to communicate with me right now, but I’m trying to brush it off really. I’m just being cordial, but I’m not taking any visits anywhere right now,” Irvin said. “I know I’ll be down at Auburn on April 8, and that’s the only place I’ll be for sure … I’ll be back down in June. I’m trying to get there a lot.”
Irvin would like to take all five official visits for the life experience, if he gets Hand’s approval.
But the offensive lineman who made the final 5 of the Nike Opening regional in Atlanta already has shifted his role from recruit to recruiter. Irvin’s top priority is finding fellow offensive linemen to join him. Irvin wants to find the right linemen to complement him.
He didn’t have to look far.
Prior to moving to Stephenson High (Ga.), Irvin played in the Tucker (Ga.) school district with fellow 4-star 2018 prospect Dylan Wonnum. Irvin referred to the two as “really close friends” who played right guard and right tackle for the same team in 10th grade.
Wonnum is ranked the No. 5 offensive guard nationally, the No. 126 prospect overall, per the 247Sports composite rankings. He holds offers from Florida, LSU, Ohio State, South Carolina, Tennessee, USC and others, but Irvin hopes his friendship can pull Wonnum toward the Plains.
“If we could do that in college, it’d be good. I’d really enjoy it. I want to get back to Auburn with him,” Irvin said. “I hope our friendship plays a large part.”
It’s one week from Auburn’s spring game, but the Tigers are already hosting an impressive group of visitors for the second spring scrimmage Saturday.
SEC Country wrote earlier in the week that top offensive line target Richard Gouraige and tight end target Tyneil Hopper will attend the scrimmage in Jordan-Hare Stadium. More names have been confirmed, including another quarterback target for the Tigers.
Gerry Bohanon is another potential option at quarterback in the 2018 class. Auburn already has Joey Gatewood, but my sources have told me there is a growing interest in trying to bring in two quarterbacks this class. Bohanon seems like the right starting place. Many programs are recruiting Bohanon as an athlete, but he told SEC Country that Auburn wants him at quarterback.
Bohanon will be on campus from Friday to Sunday, so he’s certainly getting priority treatment.
Hopper won’t be the only tight end in attendance. Ryland Goede, one of the top TEs in the 2019 class, confirmed with SEC Country that he’ll be at the scrimmage Saturday.
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