Alabama Football Recruiting: Meet the Crimson Tide's 2014 Class
Nick Saban has once again brought in the nation’s No. 1 signing class, according to all four major recruiting sites.
The 2014 class consists of 26 members plus a transfer and meets a lot of needs the Crimson Tide had at critical positions. It also puts them back on track to the top of the college football world.
With that, let’s go right ahead and meet every member of the Tide’s 2014 class, in order of position, that has signed a letter on intent, either on signing day or earlier in January.
Note: Elisha Shaw also technically committed to the Tide on national signing day; however he is likely to receive a medical scholarship, according to The Tuscaloosa News' Cecil Hurt.
6’5”, 241 lbs
4-star QB, No. 79 overall
Norman North (Norman, Okla.)
Stats from final full season: 191-of-338, 2,742 yards, 27 touchdowns, eight interceptions
Other finalists: Arkansas, Auburn, Indiana
Commit date: June 14, 2013
Analysis: Cornwell missed the last half of his final year of high school with a knee injury but is on schedule to be ready to go by the start of spring practice. He will challenge incoming Jacob Coker and others for the starting quarterback job but could still contribute down the road if he doesn’t initially win it.
6’5”, 230 lbs
Florida State transfer (Mobile, Ala.)
2013 stats: 18-of-36, 250 yards, no touchdowns, one interception
Other finalists: None
Commit date: January 26, 2014
Analysis: While Coker won’t count against the 25 signee cap the SEC imposes on its schools, he’ll get to campus at the same time as everyone else in May (assuming he graduates on time). Coker will immediately challenge and is an early favorite for the starting quarterback job.
6’2”, 225 lbs
5-star ATH, No. 16 overall
Northridge (Tuscaloosa, Ala.)
Other finalists: UCLA, Notre Dame, Ole Miss
Commit date: September 7, 2012
Analysis: Scarbrough can do a lot of things on both sides of the ball. He’ll most likely start out at running back or wide receiver and work his way from there. Wherever he lands, Alabama has landed an elite talent.
6’4”, 199 lbs
4-star WR, No. 84 overall
Ouachita Parish (Monroe, La.)
Other finalists: Arkansas, Auburn, Georgia
Commit date: August 24, 2013
Analysis: Sims will face a steep road ahead of him at wide receiver, one of Alabama’s deepest positions. His most likely opportunity to contribute will come in 2015, when all of Alabama’s top five receivers from 2013 will most likely be gone.
6’5”, 197 lbs
4-star WR, No. 221 overall
LaSalle (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Senior-year stats: 46 catches, 586 yards, seven touchdowns
Other finalists: Arkansas, Boston College, Bowling Green
Commit date: June 16, 2013
Analysis: Like Sims, Kief will have to really wow coaches to show that he can contribute from Day 1. Still, in Sims and Kief, Alabama now has two big targets for future Tide quarterbacks.
6’3”, 230 lbs
3-star TE, No. 42 overall JUCO prospect
Georgia Military College (Moultrie, Ga.)
Other finalists: Louisville
Commit date: February 3, 2014
Analysis: Flournoy-Smith gives Alabama another tight end who can make noise in the passing game, something Lane Kiffin would be wise to utilize next season. He was a late add to the class but a welcome one nonetheless.
6’7”, 335 lbs
5-star OL, No. 4 overall
West Monroe (West Monroe, La.)
Other finalists: Arkansas, Auburn, LSU
Commit date: December 13, 2013
Analysis: Robinson is the top signee in Alabama’s 2014 class, and he will have a chance to compete for the vacant left tackle spot right away. He enrolled in January and will be able to take part in spring practice to give him a head start.
6’7”, 304 lbs
4-star JUCO OL, No. 2 overall JUCO prospect
College of San Mateo (San Mateo, Calif.)
Other finalists: Arizona State, Arkansas
Commit date: June 26, 2013
Analysis: In Alabama’s mammoth offensive line class, Jackson is the other candidate besides Robinson to see playing time right away, as he already has experience at the junior college level.
6’4”, 290 lbs
4-star OL, No. 76 overall
Cedar Falls (Cedar Falls, Iowa)
Other finalists: Boise State, Iowa
Commit date: August 11, 2013
Analysis: Saban has called offensive line the most difficult position to master on a football team, and for that reason linemen usually redshirt their first year on campus, unless they’re standout talents. Expect Pierschbacher to do the same, but he figures to be a big piece later on down the road.
6’2.5”, 292 lbs
4-star OL, No. 172 overall
East Ridge (St. Paul, Minn.)
Other finalists: Minnesota, Vanderbilt
Commit date: June 17, 2013
Analysis: Hassenauer is similar to Pierschbacher (no, not just because he has a long name) in that he’ll likely redshirt but play in a few years. Alabama’s offensive line is clearly in good hands going forward.
6’1”, 297 lbs
4-star OL, No. 260 overall
St. Paul’s Episcopal (Mobile, Ala.)
Other finalists: Auburn, Florida, Florida State
Commit date: October 29, 2013
Analysis: In Casher, Alabama adds yet another stud offensive lineman and St. Paul’s prospect, where AJ McCarron and Jacob Coker both played high school ball. Expect Casher to also redshirt his first year on campus.
6’4”, 329 lbs
3-star OL, No. 422 overall
Plant City (Plant City, Fla.)
Other finalists: Auburn, FIU, Florida State
Commit date: July 2, 2013
Analysis: McBride rounds out a stellar offensive line class for Saban and Co. He is one of just four 3-stars in this class.
6’4”, 265 lbs
5-star DE, No. 5 overall
Woodbridge (Woodbridge, Va.)
Senior-year stats: 16 sacks
Other finalists: Michigan, Florida
Commit date: November 14, 2013
Analysis: Hand joins Robinson and Tony Brown as the three top-10 prospects in this class, and chances are they’ll line up against each other in practice some days. He should be able to come in and contribute from Day 1 like Jonathan Allen and A’Shawn Robinson in 2013.
6’3”, 335 lbs
4-star DT, No. 85 overall
Har-Ber (Springdale, Ark.)
Other finalists: Arkansas, Texas A&M
Commit date: November 23, 2013
Analysis: With Alabama missing out on 5-star defensive tackle Matt Elam, Frazier appears set to be the nose tackle of the future. He brings great size and ability to a defensive front that will be loaded in 2014.
6’4”, 310 lbs
4-star JUCO DT, No. 13 overall JUCO prospect
East Mississippi Community College (Chatham, Va.)
2013 stats: 66 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks
Other finalists: Mississippi State, Tennessee
Commit date: December 4, 2013
Analysis: Reed will have a shot at seeing some time at nose tackle this year, where Alabama was noticeably lacking a dominant option in the middle.
6’3”, 250 lbs
4-star JUCO DE, No. 15 overall JUCO prospect
East Mississippi Community College (Pensacola, Fla.)
2013 stats: 45 tackles 18.5 tackles for loss, 11.5 sacks
Other finalists: Florida State, Tennessee
Commit date: December 18, 2013
Analysis: Now in his second stint at Alabama, Pettway will get a chance to play in a deep defensive front. He showed off impressive pass-rushing skills in limited action before he was dismissed from the team last February in connection with an on-campus robbery, per CBS Sports.
6’2.5”, 303 lbs
3-star DL, No. 429 overall
Wilcox County (Rochelle, Ga.)
Other finalists: LSU, North Carolina
Commit date: June 4, 2013
Analysis: Dwight is most likely headed for a redshirt with so much talent in front of him on the defensive line. Still, he is a promising prospect with a lot of upside who could develop into a solid contributor.
6’2”, 320 lbs
3-star DE, No. 398 overall
Airline (Bossier City, La.)
Other finalists: Mississippi State, Hawaii
Commit date: May 24, 2013
Analysis: After some consternation, Smith decided not to decommit and sign with the Tide, according to TideSports.com’s Andrew Bone. Smith caps off a defensive line class that’s almost as impressive as the offensive line.
6’3”, 220 lbs
5-star OLB, No. 15 overall
Auburn (Auburn, Ala.)
Senior-year stats: 77 tackles, 43 tackles for loss, 17.5 sacks
Other finalists: Auburn
Commit date: February 5, 2014
Analysis: Evans was easily the biggest get of the day for Alabama, because he was the only get. Defensive coordinator Kirby Smart once again pulled the top player in the state from Auburn High School to Tuscaloosa, doing the same with Reuben Foster last year. It’s going to be hard to keep a talent like Evans off the field next year.
6’4”, 222 lbs
4-star OLB, No. 39 overall
Spring Valley (Columbia, S.C.)
Senior-year stats: 188 tackles, 25 tackles for loss, 24 sacks
Other finalists: Clemson, Florida, Florida State
Commit date: July 25, 2013
Analysis: Miller fits the mold of outside linebacker in Alabama’s 3-4 defense. With Evans in the mix, it will make it that much harder for Miller to get on the field in his freshman year, but he could make an impact in special teams.
Shaun Dion Hamilton
6’0”, 240 lbs
4-star ILB, No. 203 overall
Carver (Montgomery, Ala.)
Other finalists: Auburn, Clemson
Commit date: April 17, 2013
Analysis: Hamilton will be part of a group of inside linebackers looking to fill the role of the departed C.J. Mosley. He is also a candidate to contribute on special teams.
6’4”, 210 lbs
4-star LB, No. 281 overall
Hillcrest (Tuscaloosa, Ala.)
Other finalists: Kentucky, Mississippi State
Commit date: July 30, 2013
Analysis: Holcombe is one of two Tuscaloosa prospects in this class and might just be the sleeper of the group. He isn’t the most highly rated by a long shot, but he has good speed and instincts that make a solid middle linebacker.
6’0”, 188 lbs
5-star CB, No. 9 overall
Ozen (Beaumont, Texas)
Other finalists: LSU, USC, Texas, Ohio State
Commit date: January 2, 2014
Analysis: With the cornerback position seemingly wide open heading into spring and summer, Brown, along with fellow cornerback signee Marlon Humphrey, will have the best chance to start of anyone on this list. Brown is already enrolled and will also be on the track team.
6’1”, 175 lbs
5-star CB, No. 12 overall
Hoover (Birmingham, Ala.)
Other finalists: Florida State
Commit date: January 29, 2014
Analysis: With Humphrey and Brown, Alabama filled its most immediate need, which is a true shutdown corner. Humphrey has tremendous speed and will also run track with Brown.
Laurence "Hootie" Jones
6’2”, 220 lbs
4-star S, No. 50 overall
Neville (Monroe, La.)
Other finalists: LSU, Arkansas
Commit date: January 2, 2014
Analysis: Alabama will have a vacant spot at safety this season that Jones could fill if he impresses in camp. He is an early enrollee, so he’ll have time to learn the defense and assimilate into the team.
6’2.5”, 215 lbs
4-star DB, No. 70 overall
Calera (Calera, Ala.)
Other finalists: Auburn
Commit date: October 4, 2013
Analysis: Clark can play a number of positions—he played quarterback in high school in addition to defensive duties. He will most likely start off at safety, a position of need for the Tide.
6’4”, 185 lbs
J.K. Mullen (Denver, Colo.)
Other finalists: Notre Dame, Arizona, Colorado
Commit date: February 5, 2014
Analysis: Scott handled kicking and punting while in high school, and Alabama will have vacancies at both positions. He will most likely battle for the punting job, with rising sophomore Adam Griffith entrenched as kicker.
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