Welcome to SEC Country’s daily Auburn football recruiting notebook with Auburn recruiting beat writer Benjamin Wolk. In this edition, we examine a top Auburn defensive back target, Joseph Foucha, and a top Auburn offensive line target, William Barnes.
Top DB breaks down Auburn interest, recent visit
Greg Brown’s attention and prioritization is paying off for Auburn.
Auburn’s first-year defensive backs coach appears to have done some attentive scouting this spring with his defensive backs of choice. The Tigers are recruiting multiple cornerbacks and safeties from multiple different states, and nearly all of them have been guys Brown has keyed in on since taking over.
Joseph Foucha from New Orleans is a textbook example.
Brown watched the 3-star safety from McDonogh 35 (La.) practice earlier in the evaluation period. Foucha returned the favor with a visit to Auburn at the beginning of May.
The shared interest in one another has Foucha talking highly of the Tigers’ efforts.
“I’d say Auburn’s recruiting me the hardest right now” Foucha said. “We’ve been keeping in contact every day or every other day. … I’ve been talking to coach Brown. We’re just always sending text messages to keep the relationship built. The relationship is real strong, though, because coach Brown is a real a cool guy. He likes me as a player and how I practice. He sees me at a few positions besides just safety. He’s been recruiting me very hard.”
Foucha’s first visit to Auburn passed expectations.
It gave him more personal time with Brown, as well as other members of the college coaching staff. Foucha mentioned aspects of the coaches, the campus and the atmosphere as major stand-out moments on the preliminary trip to the Plains.
“Talking to coach Brown, he showed me a lot. It was amazing getting to hang out with him. He actually came to watch me practice. It was good to talk to him, hang out with him, get the feel of the stuff like that,” Foucha said. “I felt how I wanted to feel. Everything I wanted to see, I saw it. Everything is close there. You wouldn’t have to travel as far. Everything is right there, what you eat, where you train at, where you sleep.”
Foucha could come out with a list of top 12 schools as early as today, and rest-assured, Auburn is high on that list.
Alabama, LSU, TCU, SMU, Baylor and Oregon are just a few of the programs you can expect to see alongside the Tigers. He has hopes to visits a few other schools he’s never been before, including Ole Miss and Arkansas and a decision won’t be made until National Signing Day in February, he said.
Auburn’s primary advantage may come through Foucha’s childhood, however. The Louisiana producct, once an aspiring quarterback, grew up in the Cam Newton era. He considers Newton one of his favorite players, and those defining college moments always made the Tigers one of his favorite teams to watch and envision himself play for.
“It’s just a school I looked at growing as a kid when Cam Newton was playing when I used to play quarterback. That’s a school I loved to watch,” Foucha said. “That’s just a school that means something to me.”
Foucha will return for a second trip to Auburn for Big Cat Weekend on June 3.
Top-100 OL breaks down Alabama, Auburn, Florida
SEC Country Florida reporter Zach Abolverdi went to Apopka (Fla.) Tuesday to speak with top-100 offensive lineman William Barnes.
Barnes remains one of Auburn’s top wants in the 2018 recruiting class. The No. 45-ranked prospect in the nation is considered a strong Florida lean, but is considering at least Alabama, Auburn, Ohio State and North Carolina, as well.
The Auburn connection goes way back to a camp he particiapted in last summer and a strong relationship with offensive line coach Herb Hand.
“The campus was just gorgeous to me. I definitely enjoyed the players, too. They were cool to just talk to. I seen them practice a little bit before. That’s something I enjoyed, too. I also loved being coached by coach Hand too, going up there for a camp one time. That was definitely enjoyable,” Barnes said. “I love the way they treat their players. They take care of them. I love the schools and the coaches too. Coach Hand. He’s always on my Twitter, texting me. It’s always stuff that I appreciate.”
Check out the full interview with Abolverdi below.
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