After months of deliberation, elite offensive tackle prospect Kaleb Kim has decided that he will play for the Auburn Tigers in 2015, according to Justin Hokanson of Rivals.com:
Per 247Sports, Kim is a 4-star player who ranks as the No. 25 offensive tackle in the class of 2015. He received a great deal of interest from several top programs, and it certainly couldn't have been easy for him to finally settle on one.
Per Brent Waldorff of 247Sports, Kim was eventually able to whittle his options down to a pair of SEC rivals in Auburn and Georgia:
Decision coming soon for Kaleb Kim: Four-star OL Kaleb Kim is down to Auburn and Georgia. http://t.co/eg8RyMEw1J— Brent Waldorff (@Waldeez247) April 22, 2014
Which interested school should Kaleb Kim have chosen?
The initial thought was that the Hoschton, Ga. native was a virtual lock to remain in state, but the Tigers made a major push, particularly after reaching the National Championship Game last season.
At 6'5" and 280 pounds, Kim has been the anchor of the Mill Creek High School offensive line for the past few seasons, and there is little doubt that he has the potential to play a similar role in the talent-laden SEC at some point.
Even though Kim may be hard-pressed to receive consistent playing time immediately, he possesses incredible skill and athleticism. Once he truly comes into his own, he could be a legitimate force against some of the best pass-rushers in college football.
According to Wesley Sinor of AL.com, Mill Creek head coach Shannon Jarvis sees a ton of potential in Kim and believes that he will only continue to get better at the collegiate level.
He's received a lot of accolades, but I believe his better play is ahead of him. He can carry so much weight. Once he gets into college and develops more weight and strength, I think he'll be tremendous player. (...) The biggest thing with Kaleb is he finishes his blocks. As intelligent and nice of a kid as he is, he's a nasty player. Not dirty, but nasty.
Intelligence and nastiness are two attributes that will definitely come in handy when Kim transitions to major college football. There are a lot of scheme differences between high school and college, but Kim seems to understand the game well enough to make the move seamlessly.
Also, toughness will be paramount as Kim adjusts to his new surroundings. Even if he has to learn proper technique on the fly, playing with nastiness will allow him to thrive regardless.
Kim has received plenty of hype as a prospect over the past year, and programs have seemingly become increasingly enamored with him. In that regard, Rusty Mansell of 247 Sports proved prophetic:
I believe the industry will continue to trend up on this 2015 OL Prospect in Georgia. Really like him in this cycle. http://t.co/UGksBNxUVH— Rusty Mansell (@Mansell247) February 11, 2014
Since Kim still has another high school season remaining, it stands to reason that he will enter college as an even better player than he is right now. That doesn't mean that the college game will come easy to him, but he should definitely be better prepared.
Kim has some huge expectations to live up to; however, that has been the case throughout his high school career as well. He has yet to disappoint, and it's tough imagine him failing at the next level.
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