Alabama recruiting grades at dead period
With a 30-day dead period beginning Monday it’s time for Nick Saban and the Alabama coaching staff to focus on the College Football Playoff and a semifinal game against Michigan State.
So far the 2016 recruiting cycle has seen Alabama pack on the beef with the successful recruitment of several linemen on both sides of the ball. The most notable name of the bunch is defensive linemen Kendell “Hulk” Jones, a 370-pound interior presence out of Killeen, Texas.
Alabama has filled a lot of depth needs going into the dead period so when mid-January hits they will be going hard after the elite players necessary to secure another No. 1 class.
Let’s take a look at Alabama’s recruiting grades so far.
OFFENSE: A- (10 TOTAL COMMITS)
The offensive commits are led by five-star offensive lineman Jonah Williams, a 6-foot-5, 300-pound prospect out of Folsom, Ca. Right now Williams looks like he will project as a right guard but could end up on the inside.
Jonah Williams Senior Season Highlights: https://t.co/HD215ecRPd
— Jonah Williams (@JonahGWilliams) December 14, 2015
Size matters to the Crimson Tide and the size of the offensive linemen in the class is impressive averaging around 6-foot-4 and over 325 pounds. Charles Baldwin, a JUCO All-American, will sign Wednesday and is likely to provide more immediate help at the tackle position.
Six of the ten commits on offense are linemen or tight ends, but there are some quality prospects at the skill positions too. Three-star prospect B.J. Emmons looks like a solid fullback candidate at 5-foot-10, 235 pounds and four-star wide receiver Trevon Diggs, the younger brother of Stefon Diggs, continues to be a shaky commit at best with Maryland continuing to aggressively recruit him.
DEFENSE: B+ (7 TOTAL COMMITS)
The centerpiece of the defensive class is the mammoth defensive tackle pairing of Jones and Raekwon Davis. Jones moves a lot better than you’d expect for his size and he packs a ton of power in that big frame. With proper development and a slight reduction in weight Jones will be a force in the future. He’s already embracing the SEC culture.
Well……R.I.P Florida… Got them on my grill right now. #RollTide
— Kendell Jones Jr. (@HULKJONES50) December 6, 2015
Davis, out of Meridian, Ms., is 6-7, 315 pounds and with that length you wonder if he’ll eventually be the team’s next great left tackle but as an interior guy he’s hard to move and control on the line, especially when he gets active with his long arms.
The early additions to the secondary — three-star prospects Josh Perry and Shawn Jennings — could be better than advertised. Jennings could develop into a big strong safety with Sean Taylor-like size or grow into a linebacker spot. Both prospects look slightly underrated.
If Diggs flips to Maryland, and it’s certainly a high possibility, Alabama will need to fill his spot with another receiver. They have several options, including four-star prospects Cavin Ridley, younger brother of Calvin Ridley, and Sam Bruce, who will take an official visit next month. The Tide will also need to find another kicker after Eddy Piniero flipped to the Florida Gators.
The Tide will continue to make additions in the front seven and along the offensive line. If five-star offensive lineman Gregory Little and five-star linebacker Ben Davis come into this class it will challenge for another number one spot.