Alabama Football November Recruiting Update

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Alabama Football November Recruiting Update
(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Nick Saban has Alabama poised to land its fourth consecutive top-ranked recruiting class.

With signing day roughly two months away, Alabama is poised to put the finishing touches on another top-rated recruiting class.

While Nick Saban’s club emerged from its showdown last weekend against LSU unblemished, that game also served as a showcase for the Tide’s efforts on the recruiting trail.

As Matt Scalici of noted, a bevy of prep talent made their way to Bryant-Denny Stadium to get an up close and personal look at Nick Saban’s team dominate the Tigers.

Heading down the stretch of the 2014 cycle, Alabama has 22 pledges and remains firmly in the No. 1 spot of the 247Sports class rankings.

So what lies ahead for the Tide's recruiting efforts? 

Key Needs

Regardless of how the Tide’s 2014 class finishes up, Saban and his staff have already done a tremendous job at filling its primary needs at offensive line and linebacker.

The major additions that would put this class over the top would be an impact pass-rusher at defensive end, another space-eating defensive tackle and a lockdown corner.

Landing another quality offensive tackle and a ball-hawking safety wouldn’t hurt.

With a loaded group of commitments already in the fold, Saban has the luxury of focusing on the players left at the top of the board.

Most Important Commits

Alabama 2014 Current Commitments
Name Stars Position Height Weight
Cameron Robinson 5 OT 6'5" 330
Christian Miller 4 OLB 6'4" 222
Bo Scarbrough 4 ATH/RB 6'2" 225
David Cornwell 4 QB 6'5" 241
Kalvaraz Bessent 4 CB 6'0" 170
Ross Pierschbacher 4 OT 6'4" 290
Ronnie Clark 4 OLB/S 6'3" 210
Zach Whitley 4 ILB 6'2" 220
Viane Talamaivao 4 OG 6'3" 310
Dominick Jackson 4 OT 6'7" 304
Cameron Sims 4 WR 6'3" 199
JC Hassenauer 4 C 6'2" 292
Stephen Roberts 4 CB 6'0" 177
Derek Kief 4 WR 6'5" 197
Johnny Dwight 4 DT 6'2" 303
Shaun Hamilton 4 ILB 6'0" 240
Joshua Casher 4 C 6'1" 297
Keith Holcombe 4 ATH 6'3" 210
O.J. Smith 3 DT 6'2" 320
Montel McBride 3 OG 6'4" 329
Chris Williams 3 S 6'1" 181
J.K. Scott 3 K/P 6'5" 185

Rankings, data courtesy of 247Sports

The headliner of the 2014 class is the nation’s top player, 5-star offensive tackle Cameron Robinson.

Getting Robinson to commit was beneficial for two reasons.

First, he’s the best player in the country at a position of need, and he’s also a Louisiana native that Alabama was able to pry away from rival LSU.

Joining Robinson as pillars of the Tide’s offensive class are 4-star quarterback David Cornwell and 4-star athlete/running back Bo Scarbrough.

Cornwell is a 6’5”, 241-pound quarterback who gives the Tide a strong-armed passer with great mobility who can come in and challenge for the right to succeed AJ McCarron next season.

Scarbrough, who previously played his high school ball in Tuscaloosa before transferring to IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. prior to his senior year, is a bruising 225-pounder who fits the mold of the punishing rushers that Saban loves to use in his backfield.

On defense, 4-star linebacker Christian Miller and 4-star corner Kalvaraz Bessent are cornerstones that Kirby Smart can reload with.

Miller backed off an early pledge to Florida and chose to head to Tuscaloosa instead. The 6’4”, 222-pounder is a terror off the edge who recorded 121 tackles and 14 sacks as a junior.

Bessent is a physical corner with tremendous instincts when the ball is in the air. The Georgia native hauled in six interceptions as a junior.

Most Important Targets

Alabama's Top Uncommitted Targets
Name Stars Position Height Weight
Leonard Fournette 5 RB 6'1" 226
Brian Wallace 4 OT 6'6" 305
Da'Shawn Hand 5 DE 6'4" 254
Lorenzo Carter 5 DE 6'5" 235
Matt Elam 5 DT 6'6" 350
Raekwon McMillan 5 ILB 6'2" 242
Marlon Humphrey 5 CB 6'1" 175
Tony Brown 5 CB 6'0" 188
Laurence Jones 4 S 6'2" 214
C.J. Hampton 4 S 6'1" 195

Rankings, data courtesy of 247Sports

While the Tide will heavily pursue impact players on offense such as 5-star running back Leonard Fournette, their most pressing concerns involve targets on the other side of the ball.

Finding a stud defensive end and another defensive tackle are priorities for Saban and his staff.

Dynamic pass-rushers and 5-star standouts Da’Shawn Hand and Lorenzo Carter top the wish list at defensive end for Saban.

Both players have visited Tuscaloosa within the last month, and Alabama is firmly in the top group for both players.

According to Steve Lorenz of 247Sports, Hand will decide on Thursday from a group that includes the Tide with Michigan and Florida. Carter also has the Gators on his short list, in addition to Georgia and Florida State giving chase.

In the middle, 5-star defensive tackle Matt Elam is the perfect fit as a plugger in Saban’s three-man front. The 6’6”, 350-pound Kentucky native has the home-state Wildcats and Alabama as his top two.

Finally, the Tide would love to add some playmakers in the secondary, and they are in the running for a handful of the nation’s top corners and safeties.

Topping the list at corner are 5-star defenders Marlon Humphrey and Tony Brown.

Humphrey, the son of former Tide running back Bobby Humphrey, has long been considered a Tide lean and the more likely of the two to end up in Tuscaloosa at this stage.

At safety, 4-star standouts Laurence “Hootie” Jones and Ole Miss pledge C.J. Hampton are ball-hawks who have Saban’s attention.

Jones is scheduled to decide later this month between Alabama and LSU, while Hampton has visited Tuscaloosa with great frequency this season. Expect Saban to seal the deal with at least one of the two play-making defenders.

All recruiting rankings courtesy of 247Sports.

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