The Auburn Tigers and Texas A&M Aggies are arguably two of the hottest recruiting programs in the nation after their stellar 2013 recruiting cycles, and it looks like they could end up facing off for one of the nation's best receivers.
At the very least, Auburn has put itself in position to make a late (past national signing day late) push for 4-star wideout Derrick Griffin.
Griffin has been a long-time Aggies commitment, but he didn't end up signing on national signing day due to what most consider to be academic reasons. A lot seems up in the air in regards to Griffin's process now, but Taylor Hamm of gigem247.com told me via Twitter that Griffin will go the JUCO route:
Taylor Hamm @TaylorHamm247
@AKonSports Griffin didn't sign a LOI with A&M on NSD so he's essentially back on the market. He will go JUCO2013-2-11 17:26:13
That said, we do also know that Griffin did indeed go to Auburn for an official visit this past weekend. He tweeted as much:
Derrick Griffin Jr. @Dgriff1000
JUST LANDED IN ATL ON MY OFFICIAL VISITING AUBURN2013-2-9 23:23:19
It was also reported that the visit went very well, at least according to quotes from Griffin per Justin Hokanson of AuburnSports.com:
"The visit was fun," Griffin said. "I had to rush it. But it feels like family, everything about it. As soon as I got down here everything was great. It was nice. Hanging out with the players was the highlight. They say they are a family, so hanging out with the family."
Griffin went on to basically say that Auburn is definitely in the running for his eventual signature, per Hokanson:
"I didn't sign anywhere, I still have time to sign. I'm just exploring my options. I don't know, but you'll hear more about it soon," Griffin said.
"It put Auburn into the picture big-time."
Needless to say, this has become somewhat of a mystery.
Griffin was a big time Aggies' commitment and he looked to be a huge part of their 2013 class. He's 6'7'', 210 pounds and is ranked as the No. 7 overall wideout in the 2013 class according to the 247Sports Composite.
If he does actually end up going the JUCO route, Texas A&M should feel very good about their chances of landing his commitment again once his grades are up.
If he doesn't though, and this visit to Auburn turns out to be more than an official visit just because, the Tigers could pull off an epic post national signing day recruiting trail. The key is whether or not he'll be able to academically qualify at Auburn.
Is there reason to worry if you're a Texas A&M fan?
At this point, I'd say no, despite the uncertainty surrounding the situation. Taylor Hamm of 247Sports is extremely plugged in to the Texas A&M recruiting scene, and if he says Griffin will go JUCO, there's little reason to doubt that fact.
That would keep Griffin away from Auburn in the short-term, and it would allow the Aggies to continue working on their recruiting relationship with the talented receiver. When his grades do get picked up, Texas A&M would be in a great position to land him as a JUCO transfer.
He'll have until April 1 to officially sign his letter of intent if he does end up not going JUCO, but for all intents and purposes it looks like there's little reason to worry for Texas A&M.