Rivals.com - Alabama flips Rivals100 WR JoJo Earle away from rival LSU
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Alabama flips Rivals100 WR JoJo Earle away from rival LSU

THE SITUATION

Alabama and LSU routinely go head-to-head on both the field and on the recruiting trail.

On Wednesday's first day of the Early Signing Period, give the Crimson Tide another major victory against their rival.

Longtime LSU commitment JoJo Earle, who did not intend to sign his paperwork until Feb. 3, instead flipped his commitment to Alabama and signed with the Tide.

Earle is the second LSU-to-Alabama flip of the day along with Keanu Koht. He follows in the footsteps of fellow Aledo (Texas) High School product Jase McClellan, who flipped from Oklahoma to Alabama last December.

As it stands now, Alabama has its grips on the nation's No. 1 recruiting class in the country. Earle only bolsters that standing as the No. 54 overall prospect, the No. 8-ranked wide receiver and the No. 11 overall player from the Lone Star State.

Earle joins fellow Texans in Tommy Brockermeyer, James Brockermeyer, Jalen Milroe and Kendrick Blackshire in Alabama's 2021 haul.

RIVALS REACTION

Earle is lightning in a bottle and one of the premier slot receivers in the country. He possesses elite speed and quickness and is a sharp route-runner with soft hands and is a big-play threat waiting to happen. As a sophomore, Earle managed 65 receptions for 1,090 yards and 16 touchdowns receiving and 19 overall. Last season, he improved those totals to 84 catches for 1,601 yards and 15 touchdowns receiving. Earle also added another 429 yards and 11 touchdowns on the ground, bringing his touchdown total to 26 along with more than 2,000 yards from scrimmage.

On the football field, Earle has been a key cog in Aledo's back-to-back Texas Class 5A D-II state championship marches each of the past two postseasons. The Bearcats went a perfect 16-0 Earle's sophomore season and repeated with a 15-1 mark in 2019.

Earle gives the Alabama coaches some flexibility and creativity as a versatile receiver to plug in out wide, in the slot, in the backfield and to be utilized as a return specialist. He's a home-run threat with gadget-play potential, which makes for some exciting football. Earle has also advanced in his ability to make grabs in the short and intermediate parts of the field, though he has home-run potential every time he touches the rock.

Despite a smaller frame (5-foot-9, 170 pounds), Earle possesses top-end speed and often accelerates after the catch. He's a run-after-catch specialist with exceptional twitch and elusiveness in the open field. Earle has the ability to turn a three-yard slant into a 70-yard touchdown, particularly due to his quick feet and capacity to easily change directions in an instant. Those same traits allow Earle to be equally as dangerous when it comes to kickoff and punt returns.

Earle will enjoy plenty of success in the slot as a smart, polished route-runner. He explodes in and out of his breaks and consistently separates from defensive backs in 1-on-1 settings. Even though he's a smaller receiver, Earle has a rather large catch radius and very certain hands. He also has impressive vertical skills to challenge for contested balls in mid-air and the red zone.

Earle checks off all of the major boxes while evaluating wide receivers. He's a vertical threat that can take the top off a defense from the seams or outside the numbers. Earle showcases rare field vision, elite speed and the ability to keep defenders off-balance. Routinely, he proves he cannot be corralled in the open field. He makes devastating, decisive cuts with the rock and can kick into a second gear. He has the ability to be both a safety valve for his quarterback and a downfield threat, in addition to being a primary option on gadget plays.