Check out the Bama Hammer Alabama football ‘Daily Recruiting Update’ for Dec. 18, as we count down to the Early Signing period on Dec. 19.
This is the final daily update planned for the Early Signing Period. Most players who are signing early will do so on the first day of the three day period, Dec. 19. If an Alabama football, big recruiting development occurs on the Dec. 20 or 21, we will provide the latest additional information.
We started the daily updates with ten top recruits for a projected eight open slots. Eight is an ambitious number that can only be reached with some current verbal commits flipping elsewhere and a couple of grayshirts. The number of open slots could be as few as four.
We make best guesses below but be advised with Dean, Sanders and Neal, there are widely divergent opinions from recruiting experts.
What began as a Top 10 list is now a Top 8
- 5-Star, ILB Nakobe Dean – announcement Dec. 19. The latest is Ole Miss has become an equal threat to the Tide and Georgia. LSU appears to be out of it. Best guess today is Nakobe Dean to the Alabama Crimson Tide and if it happens, all Alabama football fans should give a hat tip to Pete Golding.
- 5-Star, RB Trey Sanders – announcement on Dec. 19. Sanders is a hard to predict recruit. Florida, Georgia and the Tide are all in it. Texas has probably faded. The Alabama football staff is prepared for another RB option.
- 5-Star, OL Evan Neal – announcement on Dec. 19. The Tide leads with UGA pushing hard. Our prediction is Alabama football closes the deal.
- 4-Star, DB Jordan Battle – A flip from Ohio State to the Crimson Tide has been expected for days. It is rumored the delay might be driven by Michigan. We think he signs with the Tide on Wednesday.
None of the next four players will make a December decision.
- 5-Star, DT Ishmael Sopsher – no decision until February. There is a long way to go yet but Alabama football appears to be in a strong position.
- 5-Star, OL Darnell Wright – no decision until February. Tennessee probably leads. Some sources believe Wright does not want to choose the same school as Evan Neal. If Neal chooses Georgia, the Tide staff will push hard for Wright later.
- 4-Star, LB Henry To’oto’o – To’oto’o recruitment has been pretty quiet but Alabama football appears in a strong position to lure him away from the Pac 12. Tennessee is also in the hunt. Even potentially pulling in Nakobe Dean, the Alabama football staff wants to add To’oto’o.
- 4-Star, OLB Khris Bogle – announcement in January. Bogle has been a priority and can provide a future edge rusher, almost equal to Thibodeaux. Miami is the biggest threat to the Crimson Tide.
The next group includes contingencies and possibly new priorities
- If no Trey Sanders, we now believe 3-Star, D.J. Williams will be offered the slot and might sign on Wednesday. The problem is the Tide has somewhat slow-played Willaims and he is now highly sought by other Power Five schools, especially Auburn.
- 4-Star, Deondrick Glass is another good RB option. With Tide commit Keilan Robinson not signing early, there may be an opening for Glass who is not expected to sign early.
- The Tide staff will also continue efforts to flip Nathan Pickering and Jaren Handy in February if spots are available.
- If no Jordan Battle, 4-Star, Nola Pola-Gates and 4-Star, CB Marcus Banks are later backup options.
- The Tide staff has been interested in a second tight end. 4-Star Keon Zipperer was the choice but the buzz is he will sign with Miami or Florida.
All the star ratings in this post come from the 247Sports Composite.
On Dec. 19, Bama Hammer will post a detailed summary of each signee as they are announced by the University. Also, follow us on Twitter for updates.