TUSCALOOSA, Alabama – Camp season has started in Tuscaloosa. Alabama began its summer camps Wednesday and will be home to several of the nation’s top athletes as nine camps are scheduled over the next few weeks.
After a slow start to the Class of 2023, the Crimson Tide should start heating things up on the recruit path as more offers are distributed and recruits make their way onto campus. There’s plenty of intrigue ahead for next week when Alabama is set to host youngest quarterback Eli Holstein as well as No. 1 overall recruit Arch Manning. But this weekend, too, there will be many high-profile visitors in Tuscaloosa.
BamaCentral will break all of that down in this week’s Recruiting Rundown.
Photo | Brandon Inniss’ Instagram account, @_.Showtime1
Lots of big names on campus
Alabama will welcome several high-profile campers to campus over the weekend. Here are a few notable names to keep an eye on.
Brandon Inniss (Five Star WR, Fort Lauderdale, Florida): After having to cancel several previously planned trips to Alabama, Inniss is finally set to make an official visit to Tuscaloosa. The 6-foot, 190-pound receiver is one of Alabama’s biggest targets and has the ability to make an immediate impact at the collegiate level. Alabama is currently fighting for engagement in both Ohio State and Southern California. This weekend, the Crimson Tide could see a significant boost.
Dylan Lonergan (Four-Star QB, Snellville, Georgia): Alabama’s pursuit of Lonergan may be dampened somewhat after Holstein’s signing. Still, the Crimson Tide is looking for two quarterbacks in this class. Ideally, that extra passer would be Manning. However, if the No. 1 overall recruit decides to pass on Alabama, the tide could seriously push Lonergan to join Holstein in next year’s class. Lonergan is also a gifted talent in baseball where he throws off the mound in his low 90’s.
Malik Bryant (Four Star LB, Orlando, Florida): Following his visit to Alabama in April, Bryant is returning to Tuscaloosa this year for the second time. The 6-foot-2, 235-pound defenseman is ranked the No. 2 linebacker in the 2023 class, according to 247Sports Composite. Alabama appears to be in a good position for Bryant, who will make official visits to central Florida, Florida, Miami and southern California before announcing his decision on July 23. This weekend’s trip to Tuscaloosa will not be an official visit as Bryant plans to return to Alabama for an official visit this fall.
Riley Williams (four-star TE, Portland, Oregon): Alabama has struggled to reach elite tight ends in recent years. The Crimson Tide faces an uphill battle trying to pull Williams out of his home state of Oregon. However, getting that coveted tight end on campus is a good first step.
Luke Hasz (Four Star TE, Bixby, Oklahoma): Hasz is committed to Arkansas and has two siblings who are currently attending school in Fayetteville. Still, Alabama’s need for an elite tight end will see it continue to push hard for the top 100 recruits.
Holstein the helper
Could Holstein’s involvement have a snowball effect on the Class of 2023 in Alabama? In general, having a top quarterback on board helps make other commitments. The Crimson Tide hope this stays that way as they currently have no offensive player outside of Holstein in next year’s class. As mentioned above, the quarterback could help influence Inniss’ decision. Holstein could be even more influential in Alabama’s pursuit of Louisiana’s Shelton Sampson as the five-star recipient will travel to Tuscaloosa later this month.
Ultimately, it will be up to the Crimson Tide coaching staff to do the heavy lifting, but Holstein could serve as a nice addition to Alabama’s recruiting efforts. If he’s able to land a few big names, it should help him become a fan favorite before he even arrives on campus.
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Will there be breakout camp performers?
Last year, Kobe Prentice ran on Alabama’s radar, clocking a 4.38 in the 40-yard dash during one of the Crimson Tide’s camps. This eventually led to him receiving an offer and becoming a member of that year’s class. While bigger names will grab most of the attention, Alabama is sure its target list will grow as more hidden gems are unearthed over the next few weeks.
Jahlil Hurley’s Twitter account, @jahlilhurley_
Stay with Hurley
Jahlil Hurley became Alabama’s second commitment for 2023 when, among other things, he decided the Crimson Tide over Auburn, Georgia, Michigan and Texas A&M in late February.
Recently there have been rumors that the five-star cornerback is moving to Auburn. This would be of particular concern for the Crimson Tide considering that Elliot Washington II, a 2023 defense attorney, announced last week that he will be “visiting additional schools to fully assess and compare all of my opportunities as a student athlete.”
While Hurley’s commitment continues to be questioned, it’s crucial that the Crimson Tide brings the Florence, Alabama resident to town this weekend to improve his momentum going forward.
Here’s what Hurley told BamaCentral about Alabama after committing to the Crimson Tide:
“They produce DBs, safeties, every position in the backend that they can use in the NFL. I want to be a versatile second player and they can do that with me. Cornerback coach T-Rob [Travaris Robinson] I just got here and I’ve been cool with him for a minute since he’s in Miami. I love Coach Saban and how he trains me really hard.
“Then why not bama? Why wouldn’t you choose a school like that?”