Welcome to SEC Country’s daily Auburn Tigers football recruiting notebook with Auburn recruiting beat writer Benjamin Wolk. Today, we assess Auburn’s chances at landing offensive line prospect John Campbell, who was once high school teammates with Auburn signee Calvin Ashley.
Dr. Phillips offensive lineman 2.0
In 2015, Auburn received good news when a big offensive tackle from Dr. Phillips (Fla.) committed to the Tigers. Auburn hopes for déjà vu.
The initial commitment was from Calvin Ashley, who ended up bouncing around to a number of high schools in Florida and Washington, D.C. Ashley stuck with Auburn longer than anyone among the 2017 signees.
The Tigers can now turn their attention to another Dr. Phillips offensive tackle. John Campbell received an Auburn offer earlier this month. Campbell attended Auburn’s junior day upon Ashley’s suggestion.
Campbell trusts Ashley’s take on Auburn. It’s a strong start for the Tigers, though Campbell’s recruitment will likely run all the way until National Signing Day 2018.
“I know Calvin pretty well. I knew him since middle school. He transferred to my middle school Southwest. Then I played with him in high school,” Campbell said. “He told me Auburn is like home. They treat you like family. The coaches, they’re going to keep it 100 with you. They’re going to keep it straight with you. It’s a nice place to be.”
Campbell has been a popular prospect since attending Auburn’s junior day in January.
A 6-foot-5, 290-pound offensive tackle, Campbell has offers from — here we go — Duke, Iowa State, LSU, Georgia, UCLA, Syracuse, UNC, Colorado State, McNeese State, Buffalo, Texas-San Antonio, North Carolina State, Troy, Indiana, Boston College, Rutgers, Virginia Tech, Florida, South Carolina, Alabama, Ohio State and Ole Miss. That’s in addition to the 9 offers he held previously, including one from Auburn.
Again, Campbell’s recruitment will be lengthy. Auburn sits in promising position so far, but Florida is considered the favorite at this time.
“If I had a list, Auburn would be near the top,” Campbell said. “It’s a great coaching staff. All the coaches are pushing me to my maximum potential.”
Ashley solidified his commitment to Auburn, in large part because of his relationship with Herb Hand.
Campbell is developing a similar relationship with Hand, the second-year offensive line coach who embarks on his first full recruiting cycle on staff. The tandem spent a good portion of junior day together, and that relationship will bring Campbell back when he takes a southeast bus tour later in the summer.
“Coach Hand, he’s a great coach,” Campbell said. “I see him as one of the best offensive line coaches in the SEC, or really in all of college football. He can put me into the NFL with great form, technique, speed, everything.”
Auburn still in pursuit of 5-star RB despite commitment
Lorenzo Lingard was priority No. 1 among Auburn’s running back preferences in the 2018 recruiting class.
Of course, Lingard sat in a similar spot on probably 50 other recruiting boards across the country. Miami likely fits into that category, and Lingard decided to commit to the Hurricanes last week. It was a big land for Mark Richt & Co., as Miami beat out every program imaginable for the No. 15 overall prospect in the country.
At this point, Lingard said he can’t envision a scenario in which other schools can get back in the conversation.
“I’m not really looking at anyone else. I’m locked in with Miami and I don’t plan on taking visits,” Lingard told SEC Country’s Florida recruiting reporter Zach Abolverdi.
That’s not going to stop other programs from trying — especially Auburn.
The Tigers, according to Lingard, have been the school recruiting him the hardest since he committed to Miami. Lingard’s recap of those conversations helps give an idea of just how badly Auburn wanted the second-ranked running back in the nation. He also remained in contact with Clemson, Florida State and Texas.
It looks like it might be time for Auburn to move on to its secondary options at running back. The Tigers already have offers out to a number of top prospects. Asa Martin, Tae Provens and Harold Joiner are the immediate names to watch. All are talented in-state prospects.
Auburn’s invasion of Texas continues with WR offer
The Tigers have been busy in the Lone Star State this cycle. Auburn’s presence in the state increased since Larry Porter — rich with Texas ties — took over as recruiting coordinator and tight ends coach
The latest offer went out to 4-star wide receiver Jaylen Waddle from Bellaire, Texas.
Waddle is the No. 32 receiver and No. 190 overall prospect in the 247Sports composite rankings. A 5-foot-10, 175-pound receiver, Waddle has offers from Florida State, Oregon, Texas, Ole Miss, Texas A&M, Miami, Oklahoma, Baylor and others.
— Jaylen Waddle (@D1__JW) February 20, 2017
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