Rashaan Evans is a 4-star outside linebacker from Alabama who has a quartet of programs among his top schools. At 6'3" and 220 pounds, Evans can also play defensive end, as he is a terror on the edges, which is why he is a coveted prospect.
The athletic defender has good speed, range and shows a solid burst to finish plays. Evans also has the potential to buzz into coverage and factor in the underneath and intermediate passing game.
He has a trio of SEC powers on his list, but a Pac-12 school is also thick in the mix, according to Chad Simmons of Scout.com. The race is so tight that it warrants a look at the positives and negatives of each school.
Evans could opt for the Georgia Bulldogs, which would keep him in the South and allow him to compete in the SEC. The Bulldogs run a 3-4 defense, which would suit Evans' strengths. Todd Grantham, UGA's defensive coordinator, runs an NFL scheme, so Evans would receive great coaching while being prepared to be a pro.
The University of Georgia is located in Athens, which is said to be a great place for young adults. Academics are solid, the fanbase is passionately supportive and the Bulldogs are always in the hunt for an SEC title.
UGA is a great program, but with many other dominant programs in its conference, it's tough to get to the national title game from Athens.
The Alabama Crimson Tide are regarded as the nation's premier program, as they have won three national titles in four seasons. The Crimson Tide are supported by an intense fanbase, have an exceptionally talented roster and head coach Nick Saban is the best in the business.
Evans would get to play in an NFL-style 3-4 defense, get great coaching and receive national exposure. He also would be able to win while playing in his native state.
With Alabama possessing so much talent, early playing time may not be available in Tuscaloosa. The demanding program requires a tremendous commitment from its players.
The UCLA Bruins have become major players in the race for Evans, according to a report by Chad Simmons of Scout.com.
They have the ability to give him early playing time, as he could be the replacement for superstar defensive end/outside linebacker Anthony Barr.
UCLA has great weather, head coach Jim Mora is known as a player's coach and Evans would get a ton of rushing reps in the pass-happy Pac-12. The Bruins could be a symbol of change and growth for Evans, as he would get out of the South and be able to spread his wings since he would not be close to home.
Distance is the main negative for UCLA in the Evans sweepstakes, but it doesn't appear to be a huge obstacle. Also, there is a small chance that Mora could leave for another job before Evans graduates.
Evans is from Auburn, so he would be able to stay right at home if he chose to play for the Tigers. It is also possible for him to get on the field as a true freshman here.
Auburn has an upstart feel to its program now, as head coach Gus Malzahn is restarting things on the Plains. However, the roster still features a lot of young talent—especially on defense—and Evans would get to play in the SEC while staying in his comfort zone.
The Tigers would use his talents both at defensive end and outside linebacker, which would allow Evans to make more plays. Auburn has a great fanbase, a solid history of winning, good academics and Evans would get to see his friends and family on a regular basis.
Evans will have to decide if staying home is the best thing for him at this point in his life. Also, winning could be tough, as getting out of the SEC West alive is not easy to do.
Evans can be located by using the 2014 Bleacher Report College Football Recruiting Heat Map! This interactive tool is also mobile-ready!