Auburn's Latest Run of Commits Is Nice, but Alabama Is Still King of Recruiting

Barrett SalleeSEC Football Lead WriterJune 25, 2014

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It was "two for Tuesday" on the Plains.

While the local rock stations were cranking out back-to-back hits from the same artist, Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn was busy reeling in two big commitments over intrastate rival Alabama.

Tyler Carr, a 4-star prospect, got the morning started off right for the Tigers, committing at his high school in Gadsden, Alabama, over the Crimson Tide, according to Keith Niebuhr of Auburn Undercover.

“I've always kind of gone with my gut feeling. And my gut feeling kind of just led me to Auburn," Carr told Niebuhr. "They’re both great programs, and at the end of the day I had to follow my gut, and it was telling me to go to Auburn.”

Not to be outdone, Jalen Harris—a 3-star prospect from St. James School in Montgomery, Alabama—also chose the Tigers over the Crimson Tide, a program he grew up a fan of, according to Niebuhr. The 6'5" 244-pounder has a big frame and good hands, and he will be a tremendous weapon in Malzahn's hurry-up, no-huddle offense.

The big day brought Auburn up to 17 total pledges in the class of 2015 and all the way up to the No. 5 spot in 247Sports' latest team recruiting rankings. 

Four spots ahead of the Tigers, though, are the Alabama Crimson Tide. That won't change anytime soon.

Head coach Nick Saban has 19 total commits in next year's class and a commanding lead on Texas A&M and the rest of the college football world in the quest to claim a fifth straight recruiting national championship. 2015 Team Recruiting Rankings
RankTeamTotal CommitsPoints
2Texas A&M18255.97
4Penn State17238.81
6South Carolina18230.63
8Notre Dame14202.56
9Florida State13200.99
10Georgia12199.84 Composite (as of 6/25/2014)

That won't change.

Former Tennessee head coach Derek Dooley said it best prior to his team's game with the Crimson Tide in 2012.

Alabama head coach Nick Saban
Alabama head coach Nick SabanGerald Herbert/Associated Press

"They draft, we recruit," he said, according to Andrew Gribble of "And they get the first 25 picks of the draft."

Now, that's not entirely accurate, of course. Some prospects who are considering the Crimson Tide will sign elsewhere.

But the recruiting prowess of Saban and his staff coupled with the success Alabama has had in the NFL draft—41 picks over the last six years, according to Michael Casagrande of—will prevent Auburn or any team from knocking Alabama off its recruiting throne.

Besides, if any coach in America can close strong, it's Saban and the Crimson Tide.

The Tide famously flipped one-time Auburn commit T.J. Yeldon shortly before Christmas in 2011 and then followed that up the next year by signing one-time Auburn commit and Auburn High School linebacker Reuben Foster. This past recruiting season, the Crimson Tide again found success in enemy territory, signing 5-star linebacker Rashaan Evans out of Auburn High School.

Could that happen again? It has happened each of the last three years, so at least one high-profile flip should be expected.

Unless Saban, offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin, defensive coordinator Kirby Smart and the rest of that staff forget how to recruit, Auburn isn't going to knock the Tide off its perch as the king of college football recruiting.

Nobody will.


Barrett Sallee is the lead SEC college football writer for Bleacher Report. All recruiting information is courtesy of 247Sports.