Rivals.com - Khristian Zachary pulls major surprise with his commitment
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Khristian Zachary pulls major surprise with his commitment

You read the headline correctly.

Alabama wanted Khristian Zachary. Colorado, Missouri, Tennessee and others did too. But the 6-foot-3, 238 pound rush end out of Carrollton (Ga.) committed to Hugh Freeze and the Liberty Flames.

Zachary wasn't worried about the conference a school played in, how many championships a team has won or who put the most players into the NFL — he was worried about what school fit him, and who he is best.

"I have known for some time that I was heading to Liberty," said Zachary. "Before I had any offers, I was on a recruiting trip to Georgia Tech, and on that trip, I a very vivid vision that I was playing for Liberty ballin' out, destroying quarterbacks and we won a championship.

"That vision was so strong that I knew I couldn't deny it. I went on that visit to think about Georgia Tech, but Liberty was put in my mind so strong for a reason.

"People are going to say that school is too strong, they don't produce top players, they don't win like other top programs... I have to put God first and do what is right for Him and for me.

"Even my dad kept questioning me about this, but I know God wants me at Liberty, I prayed on it, He showed me that vision, and I feel great about my decision."

Zachary was at a mega-camp at Mercer a couple summers ago, and Liberty was there, but the Flames did not offer.

On his own, after that camp, Zachary made the trip to Liberty to check out the school on game-day. This is still without an offer from the Flames. He left that visit without an offer.

He had offers from Appalachian State, Boston College, Coastal Carolina and Temple at that time.

A couple of days later, Zachary got the call from Liberty, and an offer was extended.

"Not having that offer early, and having to wait a little, it was a teaching moment. You have to have faith. I knew Liberty was the school after that vision, but I camped in front of their coaches and I took a visit there, and still didn't have that offer.

"People want security with big offers. I eventually got offers from Alabama, Georgia, Florida and big schools people talk about all the time, but the offer I was most excited about was Liberty. Nick Saban called me, I visited Georgia, and I had connections with great coaches, but the call that I felt best about was the first one from Liberty."

Zachary said this decision was not about emotions. He cut those out when making this decision.

He knew early it was the school for him and he acted on that months ago and he's excited to open up about his decision.

"I told Liberty I was coming to their school back in April," said Zachary. "I committed to them during the quarantine. It was hard to keep it quiet. I wanted to talk about the school to people, how diverse it is and how the people are there.

"I will now be able to talk publicly about the type of school Liberty is and what it can do for people. A lot of college coaches try to brainwash kids into thinking like them, and I feel it can damage a kid in the long run.

"You have to have a mind of your own and make a decision on your own. A lot of people will think I am crazy for picking Liberty over Alabama, Tennessee and so many other colleges with big fan bases, programs that are on TV, and things like that, but I had to realize my purpose.

"God told me it is not about what the college can give to you, but what you can give to the college. I am going to go to Liberty, speak my mind, and hope to open other doors for other things to see what Liberty represents. I want to go that school, help make a change and just be different."