AUBURN, Ala. — Prior to his official visit, Auburn remained in play for Michigan offensive line commit Kai-Leon Herbert. The Tigers took a major leap while Herbert was on campus.
“Now I’m definitely considering Auburn much more than I would’ve if I didn’t come,” Herbert said Sunday.
Herbert made his first trip to the Plains since his sophomore year of high school. The coaching staff has undergone a seismic shift, so the official visit gave him an opportunity to get to know offensive line coach Herb Hand and head coach Gus Malzahn on a deeper level. He spent time at Malzahn’s house and fished in the Auburn head coach’s backyard.
Herbert was accompanied by Auburn freshmen Brodarius Hamm and Derrick Brown for much of the visit.
Plus, his mother and father attended the visit to form their own opinions.
“It really opened me and my parents’ eyes,” Herbert said. “The whole weekend, it was just a family-type feel. We went to coach Malzahn’s house.”
Auburn hasn’t specifically laid out Herbert’s trajectory at the college level, but he thinks he can play tackle or guard. Most of those conversations took place with Hand who made Herbert feel comfortable with the Tigers’ offense despite no offensive coordinator on board right now.
“Coach Hand is a really good coach. The conversations I had with him, I can tell he’s someone that not only looks after you for football but also for life too,” Herbert said.
That launched Auburn firmly into Herbert’s top 4. He is a Michigan commit for now, but even on Sunday, Herbert showed some hesitance regarding his commitment before confirming he’s still committed to the Wolverines “until anything happens.” It appears Michigan will have trouble holding onto him, however.
Herbert has official visits sets up with Miami and Florida the following two weekends, but he might not have to wait all the way through those to make his decision.
“Miami and Florida. Auburn is definitely up there for me. I’m still looking at Miami and Florida. Those are two schools including this one that are at the top,” Herbert said. “I’m definitely going to commit before National Signing Day, if I re-affirm my commitment if I happen to choose Michigan. But I’m not a guy who does the hats. That’s not me.”
Auburn might been running in a distant fourth coming into the weekend. That has quickly changed with one official stop to the Plains.
“My entire family loves it. I love it. Just the way everything has been over here the last 2 or 3 days, it’s been really great I can say,” Herbert said.