What Alabama Needs to Do Between Now and Signing Day to Nail Down No. 1 Class
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With one week to go before national signing day, the Alabama Crimson Tide are sitting pretty as they look to lock down the top spot in the 247Sports.com team composite rankings for the second straight year.
But with Florida, Michigan and Ohio State trailing close behind, locking down one of the top prospects in the recruiting pool would go a long way towards securing head coach Nick Saban with the top class in the country.
Saban got good news Wednesday when three-star wide receiver/cornerback Eddie Jackson from Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
As it currently stands, Alabama has 14 commits with four or more starts, including four with a five-star ranking.
So what do they need to secure the top spot?
According to the current 247Sports.com composite index, the Tide holds a 777.17 to 769.66 lead over Florida. The composite index is an algorithm designed by 247Sports.com to create an average rank based on the star-rating of all major services.
A good starting point would be to win the Laremy Tunsil sweepstakes over Georgia and Ole Miss. The 6'6", 295-pounder from Lake City, Fla. visited Ole Miss over the weekend and subsequently eliminated Florida State from contention.
The nation's No. 3 overall prospect would likely join the rotation along the offensive line immediately. Cyrus Kouandjio has the left tackle spot locked down, and junior college transfer Leon Brown will likely replace D.J. Fluker at right tackle.
Nailing down Tunsil's commitment could clinch the top spot.
If he falls through the cracks, all is not lost.
Adams, a 6'4", 310-pounder from Dooly County (Ga.) High School has narrowed his choices down to Clemson, Alabama, Georgia, Florida and Auburn. Clemson is likely the front runner to secure Adams' services, but if we've learned anything about Saban over the years, it's that he's one of the best closers in the country.
If Adams makes his way to Tuscaloosa, he would likely be a contributor right away in Kirby Smart's 3-4 defense. He is quick off the ball and could grow into the nose guard spot, or move into the either end spot.
Vanderdoes is heading to Alabama on an official visit this weekend, which will give Saban the last at-bat to land the Auburn, Calif. native. It may be a little more of a long shot for Alabama to land Vanderdoes, but nothing's impossible with this Alabama staff.
Reuben Foster is another five-star member of Saban's February wish list, although landing him may be a bit of a reach at this point.
Will Alabama have the top class in the nation in 2013?
The 6'1", 240-pound inside linebacker prospect from Auburn (Ala.) High School was previously committed to Alabama, switched to Auburn and is now considering the two in-state powers along with the Georgia Bulldogs.
Foster is probably more of a lean towards Auburn or Georgia, but he visited Tuscaloosa on Jan. 18 and has had plenty of time to get to know the program and the coaches.
If Alabama lands any one of those four players, it will probably maintain its spot atop the team composite rankings. Land two or more, and we could be looking at one of the best classes in quite some time.
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