5 National Signing Day Commitments We’ll Never Forget
Since Nick Saban stepped foot into Tuscaloosa, the legendary coach has been dominating the living room and consistently recruiting the best classes in America. Here are five of the most memorable commitments for the Crimson Tide.
Julio Jones (2008):
After Nick Saban’s arrival in 2007, Alabama fans were eager for the former Miami Dolphins’ head coach’s first recruiting class with the Crimson Tide. Future Alabama and Atlanta Falcons star receiver Julio Jones made history as one of the biggest commitments at the time.
Originating out of Foley, Alabama, Jones was a star at Foley High School. In an interview during Super Bowl Week in 2017 when Jones’s Falcons took on the New England Patriots, Jones admitted that he woke up on National Signing Day, still not knowing where he was going.
In an article on NFL.com, Jones explained his decision:
“I woke that morning. I was like 'OK.' I had my five envelopes, just moving them around. I was like 'I don't know where I'm going to go,'" Jones said. "But then I just thought why not stay in Alabama. People that were supporting me over the years. If I go somewhere too far, they aren't going to be able to see me play. You know? So that was one of the big reasons I stayed at Alabama. I was going to go to Auburn but I just didn't like Auburn. They left a bad taste in my mouth.”
Landon Collins (2012):
In what is arguably one of the most famous college commitments in history, future Alabama and New York Giants’ defensive star Landon Collins shocked college football fans with his choice in school. Unfortunately for Collins, this included his mother.
According to several recruiting websites, Collins was a five-star recruit out of Geismar, Louisiana. Despite being selected as one of the best high school players in America that year and being offered a spot on many of the best college teams across the country, Collins managed to narrow his choices to just two- LSU and Alabama, the two participants of the latest BCS National Championship.
When Collins was asked who he chose, the safety went with Alabama. His mother, who looked dejected, was asked by an interviewer why she was upset. She responded, “I feel that LSU is a better place for him to be.”
Reuben Foster (2013):
Coming from Auburn, Alabama, linebacker Reuben Foster was expected to be a Tiger. This was so set in stone that the future Washington Football Team linebacker got an Auburn logo tattooed on his arm.
Foster had originally been committed to Alabama, earlier in his high school career, but as time got closer, he flipped. Then to the whole country’s surprise, he flipped again.
To make the decision even murkier for fans, Foster reportedly left his official visit to Auburn early to come to visit Tuscaloosa.
Rashaan Evans (2014):
As a native of Auburn, Alabama, linebacker Rashaan Evans shocked the Yellowhammer State when he chose the archrival Alabama Crimson Tide.
At Auburn High School, Evans played with fellow Crimson Tide star Reuben Foster. As a member of the Tigers, Evans made a name for himself by recording over 70 tackles, 17.5 sacks, three forced fumbles, a blocked punt, and a fumble recovery. He also gained many accolades around the state, including being selected to the All-State team and an invitation to the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Game.
While many of his hometown friends and family assumed he would be a Tiger, Evans ended up going to Tuscaloosa. The linebacker told Rivals.com that after his commitment, it was difficult for him to walk around Auburn.
Trey Sanders (2019):
Sanders, the most recent addition to this list, continued the long line of Alabama commitments from IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida. Not only was Sanders rated five stars, but he was also the top running back prospect in the country.
Knowing that Alabama was already full at running back, the high school commit announced during his commitment on ESPNU that he would be winning the Heisman trophy as a freshman.
Sanders is currently a redshirt freshman, and the NCAA’s decision to allow players to have a free year of eligibility due to COVID, which means that this claim is still possible. This is unlikely, however, due to Sanders’s injury history. He is currently second in line at running back, with Tuscaloosa native Brian Robinson Jr. looking to start.