The aim of SEC Country’s SEC Recruiting Rewind is to bring you pertinent recruiting news across the conference. We’ll get you caught up to speed with the latest on commitments and de-commitments and everything in between.
Today’s need-to-know stories
1. Four-star WR didn’t wash his hands after meeting Nick Saban
Trey Blount visited Alabama for the Arkansas game on Oct. 10. It could also be the last time he washed his right hand.
Blount, a 4-star wide receiver from Pace Academy (Atlanta), told SEC Country that he had a chance to meet Alabama coach Nick Saban and shake his hand.
“It was very exciting,” Blount said in an interview. “I just couldn’t stop smiling. I had this expression like I wasn’t going to wash my hands.”
Alabama is one of five schools that are standing out to the receiver. UGA, South Carolina, Michigan State and Miami are also in the mix right now.
2. Five-star DT Derrick Brown says he and his family are the closest with Auburn’s Rodney Garner
Derrick Brown, the consensus No. 1 player in Georgia, has been mum on the status of his recruitment as of late.
But on Wednesday, he conceded a bit of info that could bode well for one of the five schools he’s considering.
In a radio interview with 247Sports.com’s Keith Niebuhr and Kipp Adams, the five-star prospect said of the defensive line coaches at his final five programs– UGA, Tennessee, Auburn, Alabama and Mississippi State — he and his family have grown the closest with the Tigers’ Rodney Garner.
“As a whole, my family and I have developed a great relationship with coach Garner,” Brown said in the interview. “My parents talk to him constantly.”
The 6-foot-4, 318-pound defensive tackle from Lanier High School (Ga.) even categorized his mother’s relationship with the coaching staff as one ‘that won’t be broken’.
3. Top Auburn priority considering the possibility of playing with high school teammate
Could Antwuan Jackson’s commitment be predicated on where one of his teammates ends up?
The 4-star defensive tackle from Cedar Grove (Ellenwood, Ga.) told SEC Country on Wednesday that he and teammate Elysee Mbem-Bosse, a 3-star linebacker, have considered the possibility of playing together.
“The schools we’ve narrowed it down to … we both have some good schools in common,” Jackson told SEC Country. “I really do consider playing with him at the next level.”
Jackson has maintained for some time that Ohio State and Auburn are his leading schools, with UGA and Alabama waiting in the wing. Yet, the only program both have mentioned in their final five is Auburn.
4. Junior College athlete lists Florida and South Carolina among his leaders
Less than three weeks after announcing his upcoming official visits, JUCO athlete Dre Massey has settled on a top three.
The three-star prospect from Mauldin, S.C., named Florida, South Carolina and Oklahoma among his leaders, in that particular order.
Massey has already scheduled official visits to each of the aforementioned programs, with his first coming to Oklahoma on Nov. 20. He’ll visit Florida (Nov. 28) and South Carolina (Dec. 5) shortly thereafter.
The 6-foot, 185-pound standout from Holmes Community College (Goodman, Miss.) has reported 16 offers. He originally declared South Carolina his leader on Oct. 26.
5. Alabama commit’s loyalty doesn’t hinge on Mario Cristobal’s presence
Reports have surfaced in the last few days indicating Alabama offensive line coach Mario Cristobal has emerged as the leading candidate in Miami’s search for its next head coach.
Whether Cristobal stays or goes, however, won’t influence Netori Johnson’s (Ellenwood, Ga.) commitment to Alabama. But where his teammate Antwuan Jackson, a 4-star defensive tackle, ends up could impact which program Johnson ultimately decides on.
“Where he goes, that’ll have a big impact on me, though,” Johnson told SEC Country. “Antwuan is like a brother. I go against him every day. He makes me better. When I first got there, he would whip up on me.”
6. Florida lands in-state defensive end
Florida landed its 22nd commit in the class of 2016 on Thursday morning.
Jachai Polite, a 3-star defensive end from Daytona Beach, Fla., committed to the Gators, according to Luke Stampini of 247Sports.com.
Polite had the Miami Hurricanes as his leader for several months, but he ultimately chose to play for coach Jim McElwain and Florida.
The 6-foot-3, 250-pounder gives the Gators their fourth defensive end commit in this year’s class. He is rated as the nation’s No. 33 strong-side defensive end and is the No. 103 prospect in the state of Florida.
7. Aggies secure commitment from top-10 running back
Texas A&M received huge news on the recruiting trail Thursday night.
Trayveon Williams, a 4-star running back from Houston, committed to the Aggies at his high school’s playoff game, according to 247Sports.com’s Taylor Hamm.
“It all started a long time ago with A&M,” Williams told 247Sports. “I’m just proud to be a part of a good SEC program. They’ve been recruiting me hard since the jump. I’m proud and glad to be an Aggie because they have a plan for me outside of football. It’s exciting.”
Williams, the nation’s No. 7 running back, de-committed from TCU earlier this week on the heels of officially visiting Texas A&M two weeks ago. He originally committed to TCU over Texas A&M in May.
The 5-foot-9, 185-pounder becomes commitment No. 17 for the Aggies.
8. Four-star TE names Florida his leader
Twelve hours after Florida picked up its 22nd commit in this year’s recruiting class, the Gators received some more good news on the trail.
Darel Middleton, a 4-star tight end, according to 247Sports.com’s rankings, listed Florida as his leader, per his Twitter page. Tennessee, Louisville and Clemson round out his list of leaders.
Middleton, who is from Oak Ridge, Tenn., de-committed from Arizona State in September.
He is rated as the nation’s No. 13 tight end and Tennessee’s No. 9 overall prospect, according to 247Sports.
9. Arkansas commit exploring other options, including LSU and Mississippi State
Briston Guidry has been committed to Arkansas for seven months, but before the 4-star defensive lineman finalizes his decision he wants to explore all of his options.
This Saturday night could go a long way in that process.
The 6-foot-2, 290-pound Guidry has plans to attend the Arkansas-LSU game in nearby Baton Rouge, La., Saturday night. While he contends he’s still solid with the Hogs, he’s certainly open to considering all of his other options.
“I’m still with Arkansas, but I’m weighing my options,” Guidry, the No. 17 player in Louisiana, told SEC Country. “I have to make sure I’m making the right decision.”
SEC Country’s Sam Spiegelman has the latest on Guidry’s recruitment here.
10. New Orleans sack artist removes Missouri from top-5 amid protests
As if enough wasn’t already going on at Missouri, the protests and racially-charged controversy have now hit the recruiting trail.
Sci Martin, a 3-star defensive end and the No. 42 player in Louisiana, told SEC Country he has removed Mizzou from his top five. That narrows his list down to LSU, TCU, Utah and Oklahoma.
Martin, who leads the New Orleans area in sacks this season, said he wanted no part of what’s taking place in Columbia, Mo.
“Their campus is going out of control,” Martin said Wednesday night.
Martin said Missouri was “pretty high” on his list. He previously said he liked the Tigers’ coaching staff and how he fit in their defensive scheme.
11. Four-star Junior College defensive end to take official visit to Tennessee
Jonathan Kongbo has set at least two visits.
The defensive end from Arizona Western College (Yuma, Ariz.) told SEC Country he will take an official visit to Tennessee on Nov. 28 for the Vanderbilt game.
Kongbo, rated a 4-star prospect by 247Sports.com, also said he plans to take an unofficial visit to Arizona this weekend.
The 6-foot-6, 264-pound defensive end has also been considering an official visit to Auburn. He is scheduled to take that visit on Nov. 21 according to 247Sports.com, but Kongbo did not confirm that to SEC Country.
Kongbo has reported 12 offers, including Nebraska and Oregon State among others.
Kongbo was born in Africa before he began playing football during his high school senior year in Canada.