football Edit

Big names making noise in Alabama

Ga'Quincy McKinstry
Ga'Quincy McKinstry (Rivals.com)

Last week was a very active week in Alabama when it came to news. Some big names were expected to commit over the weekend, and both decided late last week to hold off. The top player in the state set a commitment date, so there are some major storylines to follow in the Yellowhammer State.

KOOL-AID SETS DATE

Many across the country will have their eyes on Ga’Quincy McKinstry October 25.He surprised some when he announced a week ago that he was committing later this month. The two-way athlete out of Pinson Valley has been down to Alabama, Auburn and LSU since the summer and most feel this will come down to the two in-state schools.

At one time, LSU was thought to be a true contender, and with McKinstry, known by most as Kool-aid, he will keep most guessing until the end.

Alabama had the buzz very early in his recruitment, Auburn was the talk later, and it is expected to come down to the Crimson Tide and the Tigers. Some feel basketball will play a role, but how big of a role? McKinstry is still planning to play both football and basketball on the next level, so he will take a lot of things into consideration when he makes his decision.

WILLIAMS HOLDS OFF, AGAIN

In July, Jeremiah Williams almost committed. He said he was “very close” to picking up the phone and making that call. Most think that call would have gone to Florida if the four-star had gone through with it. He held off, then announced last month that he would commit October 10. Just days before that expected announcement, the star out of Ramsay High made it known that he would not be committing that week.

Most expected Auburn to get his commitment if he had committed last week as planned, and the in-state Tigers may still get Williams in the end, but this one is not over just yet.

So what held him back and what does he do next? Williams is keeping to himself, but checking with some sources, he is still in regular contact with Auburn and Florida, but also Georgia, and some feel his interest in the Bulldogs is what held him back from committing over the weekend.

He had Oklahoma in his final four, but the Sooners appear to be out. Williams is going to end up in the SEC, but where? He said he is “ not sure” when he will make his decision. The Tigers, Gators and Bulldogs are very much in this race, and it is a tight race, and after almost committing not once, but twice, this one could go three different ways.

WHITE ALMOST PULLED THE TRIGGER

Dothan High running back Jaylin White was down to Florida, Florida State and Purdue a week ago with a decision date set for October 10. That commitment did not happen.

What happened? White said he needed “a little more time”, but there yet to be a new date set. He also wants to explore all of his options. Florida State was viewed as the favorite by most, but Rivals made it clear that Florida was also very high on his list leading up to his commitment.

He has visited Florida State, and Tallahassee is less than two hours from home, so the Seminoles are still a school to keep a close eye on. They have remained in contact with White the last few days.

A couple of new schools that have picked up their communication since he postponed his commitment are Louisville and Mississippi State. White told Rivals that he thinks he will commit within the month.

WHO’S NEXT?

Other than McKinstry, there are some other big names to watch. West Limestone High tight end River Helms will commit Monday at noon. He has been focused on Florida State, Georgia Tech, Louisville and UCF. The Cardinals appear to be out, and will be either the Seminoles, Yellow Jackets or Knights.

Who could be next? There are a couple of defensive backs to keep an eye on. American Christian’s Kamari Lassiter and Shade Valley’s Marlen Sewell are two names we have heard could be closing in on decisions. There is no date set or announced yet, but October could be the month for each.

Lassiter has had a lot of schools in pursuit, but the ones talked about most have been Auburn, Clemson, Georgia and Georgia Tech. Sewell is still being evaluated by numerous schools, including Missouri and Vanderbilt, but out of the schools that have offered, Kansas, Texas Tech and Western Kentucky have been in constant contact.

SMITH'S BACK ON THE MARKET

On August 21, defensive end Demarcus Smith committed to Ole Miss. He was confident in his decision, he had gotten close to the coaching staff in Oxford, and things looked to be going well, but last week, less than two months after committing, he backed off that pledge. He said he felt he “rushed” his decision.

Ole Miss has not been eliminated by Smith said, and the new list of schools outside the Rebels includes Kansas, Mississippi State, Nebraska, South Carolina and Tennessee. If there is a school that could be trending a little now, it would be the Bulldogs in Starkville. He said he is open though, and there is no new timeline for his commitment.

NEW NAME TO KNOW

It is not easy in 2020 for seniors to take off mid-season, but one to watch is defensive end Kason Boston. The defensive end has played not four full games this season, but has picked up nine quarterback sacks. The senior out of Jackson-Olin had three sacks last week and four the game in the week before. He has gone from around 215 pounds a year ago to 250 pounds this season, and his coaching staff feels he may grow into a very athletic defensive tackle on the next level.

Nebraska officially offered Sunday night. Georgia Tech and Mississippi State are on him as well. His senior film is starting to get out, and Boston is likely one to see his stock at an all-time high later this season.