Welcome to SEC Country’s daily Roll Tide-ings , a rundown of everything happening in Alabama Crimson Tide recruiting with Chris Kirschner. Today, we talk the latest with one of Alabama’s top inside linebacker targets and an in-state defensive tackle.
Vernon Jackson on track to commit later this month
Vernon Jackson, a 3-star athlete from Boling (Texas) High School, admittedly doesn’t do many interviews with reporters. Jackson is a very smart kid. He has a 3.8 GPA and wants to major in either business or kinesiology.
The reason why Jackson chooses to be quiet when it comes to his recruitment is because he fears that he’ll say the wrong thing. He almost slipped up when asked what Alabama’s chances of landing his commitment will be when he announces his decision on Aug. 26.
“They’re really good,” Jackson told SEC Country. “I would say it’s between — I would say they have a pretty good chance. I’m down to my final steps and I just want to make sure I’m making the right choice. I just need to sit down with my family and talk it over.”
Jackson almost said Alabama and one other school are his two finalists. He has two private leaders at this time. Publicly, he chooses to say Alabama, Baylor, Florida, LSU, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, TCU and Texas A&M are tied. But, without naming the schools, he did say how two of those schools stand out.
“These schools separated themselves just from the way they do things there,” Jackson said. “I believe I’ve been to every school in my top 8, and these two schools stood out. I like different things about them. It’s going to be pretty hard to pick.”
The thought is those two schools are Alabama and Texas A&M. What’s interesting about his recruitment, and if those two schools are in fact his leaders, is the Crimson Tide want him to play inside linebacker and the Aggies prefer him at running back, he said. Jackson plays quarterback for his school. He may be the only national recruit in the country who has schools wanting him to play quarterback, running back, linebacker or safety at the next level.
How does Jackson weigh his options when he has schools wanting him to play all over the place?
“It’s kind of hard,” Jackson said. “I really don’t know, but it’s a good question. I feel like I can play at a high level on both sides of the ball.”
SEC Country was told by one college assistant that Jackson is a freak. He’s a major priority for Alabama. Jackson squats 600 pounds and reps 350 on the bench.
The 6-foot-3, 240-pound prospect visited Tuscaloosa for three days last month. That was his last visit before his commitment. He’s not planning on taking any final trips and doesn’t have any official visit planned yet.
Jackson said Alabama is in contact with him almost every single day, and he talks to defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt, outside linebackers coach Tosh Lupoi, running backs coach Burton Burns and assistant director of player personnel Sam Petitto.
While in Tuscaloosa last month, Alabama made a big impression on him.
“It felt like home to me,” Jackson said. “Everyone is like a family member there. I stayed a couple of days there, so I got to see every aspect of the school. I just liked it there. I trust the coaches a lot.”
The nation’s No. 23 athlete would like to be a coach one day and is legally blind without his contacts in place.
Coynis Miller favoring 2 schools
Coynis Miller, one of Alabama’s top defensive tackle targets in the 2018 class, told Birmingham TV reporter Rick Karle that two SEC schools are standing out more than the other three schools in his top 5.
“Florida and Auburn really got my most interest right now, just from having a great relationship with all of the coaches and the staff,” Miller said.
Miller, who was thinking about making a commitment before his senior season begins at Jackson-Olin High School (Birmingham, Ala.), said he will probably make his decision after his team finishes its schedule.
The 6-2, 300-pound prospect has said in multiple interviews with SEC Country that Alabama was the school recruiting him the hardest via offensive line coach Brent Key, who is Miller’s primary recruiter. Miller also grew up a big Crimson Tide fan, but that won’t play any role in his decision. It should be noted that some close to the Alabama program fear that the team’s chances of signing Miller aren’t as good as they should be because his head coach is an Auburn grad and huge supporter of the Tigers; however, I personally don’t see that being an issue. Auburn also signed Miller’s teammate TD Moultry, who wanted to commit to Alabama, in the 2017 class.
If Miller doesn’t sign with Alabama, some other defensive tackle targets to keep an eye on moving forward are junior college DT Caleb Tremblay, Army All-American Bobby Brown, Florida State commit Robert Cooper, Mississippi prospects Jeffery Johnson and James Williams and in-state prospect Jalen Cunningham.
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