Members of the coaching staff tried warning us that this was the biggest recruiting weekend in program history. Well, they weren’t lying!
UAB hosted a total of sixteen prospects on campus this weekend. Three of the sixteen were already committed to UAB before they stepped foot on campus, but that still left a lot of work to be done. Coach Clark and his staff embraced the challenge by ultimately landing a total of nine new commitments.
The buzz started late Friday evening when Coach Clark hinted on social media that UAB received its first verbal commitment of the weekend. Clark remained active on Twitter the next day when he hinted at an additional two commitments. These first three commitments turned out to be Tyler Haddock, Kendrick Hair, and Donnie Lee.
Then Sunday happened! Before most were even out of their Sunday morning church services, UAB had landed a total of six new verbal commitments. Barton Simmons, the Director of Scouting for 247sports.com, released an article at 11:25 am revealing five of the six new commitments. These five verbal commitments were from Dacorius Law, Corey Davis, Ronnie Turner, Andre Wilson, and Tarik Ballard. The sixth verbal commitment, Anthony Brooks, was mentioned by Simmons in another tweet only eleven minutes later.
Even with all that has been happening on the recruiting trail, I don’t think many could have predicted receiving nine new commitments in one weekend. A weekend that just so happens to be the final one before National Signing Day this upcoming Wednesday. The next few days will certainly be hectic, but one thing is for sure – #TheReturn is alive and stronger than ever!
Visitors This Past Weekend:
- Tarik Ballard (2016) – Ballard is a 6-foot-5, 260 pound tight end/linebacker from Feather River Community College in Quincy, Calif. While I’ve seen him listed as a tight end by several analysts, most of his stats from this past season came on the defensive side of the ball. In nine contests, Ballard recorded six catches for a total of 62 years. After the second game of the season it appears he was moved to linebacker, where he totaled 43 tackles, 5 tackles for a loss, a fumble recovery, and an interception. You can’t teach Ballard’s size, and the UAB coaching staff will have plenty of time to decide which position he’ll primarily play for the Blazers.
- Anthony “A.J.” Brooks (2016) – Brooks is a 6-foot-2, 200 pound running back from Gavilan College in Gilroy, Calif. Interestingly enough, Brooks had committed to play for East Tennessee State one month ago after visiting them in early December. Brooks will look to bring speed to the Blazer backfield as he runs a 4.41 40-yard dash.
- Earl Chambers (2016) – Chambers is a 6-foot-2, 195 pound safety from Merced College in Merced, Calif. Chambers has been committed to UAB since early December. He racked up a total of 95 tackles, 6 tackles for loss, two fumble recoveries, and two interceptions in his two seasons at Merced College.
- Corey Davis (2016) – Davis is a 6-foot-2, 210 pound wide receiver/h-back from East Mississippi Community College in Scooba, Miss. According to Barton Simmons via 247sports.com, Davis caught 4 touchdowns this last season.
- Tyler Haddock (2016) – Haddock is a 6-foot, 290 pound defensive tackle from California University of Pennsylvania in California, Pa. The Pittsburgh, Pa. native recorded 43 tackles, 13.5 TFL, 5.5 sacks, and 1 forced fumble/fumble recovery in his two seasons of junior college play. He had four sacks this past season alone. Coming out of high school Haddock was originally committed to Kent State before changing his mind and signing with Temple. He then went the junior college route before ever playing a down for the Owls.
- Kendrick Hair (2016) – Hair is a 6-foot-5, 300 pound defensive tackle from Pearl River College in Poplarville, Miss. Hair was a highly sought after recruit in the 2013 recruiting class. At this time he had offers from Boston College, Cincinnati, FIU, Louisville, Marshall, Memphis, Purdue, and interest from other big time programs. He received an offer from South Carolina on May 3rd, 2015 when he saw his rating sky rocket to a 97 overall on 247sports.com. After not enrolling anywhere last summer he saw his rating drop to an 86 overall before eventually choosing the Blazers.
- Jordan Johnson (2016) – Johnson is a 5-foot-11, 190 pound athlete from Terry High in Terry, Miss. Johnson played both the quarterback and running back positions for his varsity squad. He committed to Jackson State University earlier this month before officially visiting UAB. He was extended an offer from the coaching staff on the last day of his visit.
- Dacorius “D.J.” Law (2016) – Law is a 5-foot-10, 190 pound running back from East Mississippi Community College in Scooba, Miss. Law has had his fair share of signing day drama. Back in February 2014, both Utah and Ole Miss received NLIs from the talented running back. Before he played a down for either university, he decided to go the junior college route. He averaged 85 rushing yards per game this past season at East Mississippi Community College and should make an immediate impact when the Blazers take the field in 2017.
- Donnie Lee (2016) – Lee is a 6-foot-2, 215 pound strong safety from Arkansas Baptist College in Little Rock, Ark. Barton Simmons of 247sports.com praised Lee’s physical presence. His physical presence turned heads at an offseason camp for Arkansas last summer. Richard Davenport, a writer for wholehogsports.com, had this to say, “Arkansas Baptist College has two of the best looking athletes here. CB Donnie Lee looks to be 6-1, 200 while OLB LaDarius Daniels is 6-0, 207. Both are ripped. Arkansas wanted them to come up and work out.”
- Garrison Mitchell (2016) – Mitchell is a 6-foot-1, 193 pound defensive back/wide receiver from Blinn College in Beaumont, Texas. Mitchell is a highly talented and multi dimensional prospect who chose UAB over offers from Colorado State, Southern Miss, and Stephen F. Austin. He also had interest from programs such as Arizona, SMU, Texas A&M, and Vanderbilt. At the receiver position during the 2015 season he registered 25 catches for 498 yards and 6 touchdowns.
- Raylon Richardson (2016) – Richardson is a 6-foot-5, 180 pound wide receiver from Miller Grove High in Lithonia, Ga. Richardson is a multi-sport athlete and with his size it’s not hard to understand why. In 10 games for his varsity basketball team he is averaging a near double double with 3.5 blocks per game according to maxpreps.com. He was a standout performer at on offseason football camp for Ohio State, which took place last June.
- Ronnie Turner (2016) – Turner is a 6-foot-4, 190 pound wide receiver from Hartnell College in Salinas, Calif. Ronnie is the brother of UAB preferred walk-on quarterback, Michael Turner. Turner is a huge get for the Blazers as he held offers from Colorado, Cincinnati, GA State, MTSU, San Jose State, and Utah State. It’s very early, but I’d be very surprised if Ronnie is not running with the first team offense when we start fall practice in 2017. Kudos to this staff for landing a big time commitment on the last weekend before National Signing Day.
- Xavier Ubosi (2016) – Ubosi is a 6-foot-4, 200 pound wide receiver from Pierce College in Woodland Hills, Calif. Ubosi is a prospect the staff has had their eyes on for a while now. He has a long list of suitors fighting for his signature on Wednesday including Arkansas State, UMASS, San Diego State, Southern Miss, Toledo, and Western Michigan. He is one of the four prospects who visited this past weekend whom did not commit before leaving campus.
- Malik Williams (2016) – Williams is a 6-foot-3, 215 pound running back from Allan Hancock College in Santa Maria, Calif. Arguably the most talented prospect on campus this past weekend, Williams is another one who did not verbally commit before heading back home. Williams will have a lot to think about the next couple of days after recently taking visits to Purdue and Louisville as well. It goes without saying that a signature from Williams on Wednesday would be the explanation point to what appears to be one of the best recruiting classes in UAB history.
- Andre Wilson (2016) – Wilson is a 5-foot-10, 175 pound wide receiver from Trinity Valley Community College in Athens, Texas. Wilson racked up an impressive 13 touchdowns to go along with over 800 receiving yards this past season. He also held a Utah State offer, which he received back in October.
- Chris Woolbright (2016) – Woolbright is a 6-foot-3, 230 pound outside linebacker from Fresno City College in Fresno, Calif. The Region 1 All-California First Team Defensive award recipient is still learning the ropes at the linebacker position as he spent most of his football career playing the safety, tight end, and wide receiver positions. The all around player claims offers from UAB, Idaho, Texas State, and Wyoming. He had at least two other visits set up for this month before those schools backed off. The one school that remained on him was UAB, and that hard work paid off when he committed last week.
- Tyler Sims (2016) (unofficial) – Sims is a 6-foot-1, 195 pound corner back/safety from Tampa Catholic High in Tampa, Fla.
- Chandler Davis (2016) (unofficial) – Davis is a 5-foot-11, 215 pound middle linebacker from Northview High in Dothan, Ala. He attends the same high school as UAB commit, Tyler Marshall.
- William Johnson (2016), a 6-foot-3, 220 pound outside linebacker from Arizona Western Community College, flipped his commitment from UAB to UNT after visiting the Mean Green this past weekend. He never visited UAB. In fact, he appeared to have “settled” on UAB based upon his quotes around the time he committed. His talent is incredible and it would have been nice to have him in Birmingham, but if he didn’t want to suit up in the green and gold then I’m good with him playing elsewhere.
- Demetrius Davis (2016), the 5-foot-10, 175 pound athlete from Huffman High, originally said on social media that he was going to announce his college decision on Saturday, but he later tweeted out that he was delaying the announcement. You can bet the UAB coaching staff is hoping he puts on a green and gold cap on Wednesday.
- UAB target, Eugene Minter (2017), picked up an offer from Troy University on Thursday, January 28.
- Bayley Blanchard (2016), who took an unofficial visit to UAB earlier this month, verbally committed to West Alabama last week.
- A member of the UAB coaching staff visited Trevon Augustine, a 6-foot-4 wide receiver from Mt. San Antonio College in Calif., last Wednesday.
- Robert Adams (2016), a 6-foot-3, 190 pound wide receiver who had an official visit earlier this month, verbally committed to Samford University last week.
- Shawn Poindexter, (2016) a 6-foot-7, 215 pound wide receiver from Glendale Community College, was offered by UAB last Tuesday. He was later offered by Marshall and visited them this past weekend.
- Tyson Williams (2017) picked up an offer from UAB last week. He is a 5-foot-10, 175 pound athlete from Dothan High in Dothan, Ala. He already holds offers from Cincinnati, Louisville, Memphis, Nevada, and Troy.
- Jake Verity (2016), a 6-foot-2, 170 pound kicker/punter from Breman, Ga., picked up a UAB offer last week. He holds a ECU offer, as well.
- Tadarrius Patterson (2017) had an unofficial visit with UAB last week. Patterson is a 6-foot-1, 211 pound outside linebacker from Birmingham, Ala. The Carver High prospect has an impressive list of schools recruiting him, but the one that is in the lead is Kentucky. Kentucky and Mississippi State are the lone SEC schools to offer Patterson so far, but I anticipate that will change this summer. UAB is in hot pursuit along with MTSU, Troy, and Southern Miss.
Spring 2016 Commitment List:
- Tarik Ballard 6-foot-5, 260 pound tight end/linebacker from Feather River Community College in Quincy, Calif.
- Anthony “A.J.” Brooks 6-foot-2, 200 pound running back from Gavilan College in Gilroy, Calif.
- Earl Chambers 6-foot-2, 195 pound safety from Merced College in Merced, Calif.
- Corey Davis 6-foot-2, 210 pound wide receiver/halfback from East Mississippi Community College in Scooba, MS
- Tyler Haddock 6-foot-0, 290 pound defensive tackle from California University of Pennsylvania in California, PA
- Kendrick Hair 6-foot-5, 300 pound defensive tackle from Pearl River College in Poplarville, MS
- Jordan Jamison 6-foot-7, 320 pound offensive tackle from Lafayette High in Oxford, MS
- Malique Johnson 6-foot-3, 315 pound offensive guard from Iowa Western Community College in Council Bluffs, IA
- Tyler Johnston 6-foot-2, 212 pound dual threat quarterback from Spanish Fort High in Spanish Fort, AL
- Dacorius “D.J.” Law 5-foot-10, 190 pound running back from East Mississippi Community College in Scooba, MS
- Donnie Lee 6-foot-2, 215 pound strong safety from Arkansas Baptist College in Little Rock, AR
- Tyler Marshall 6-foot-5, 225 pound pro style quarterback from Northview High in Dothan, AL
- Garrison Mitchell 6-foot-1, 193 pound defensive back/wide receiver from Blinn College in Beaumont, TX
- Ronnie Turner 6-foot-4, 190 pound wide receiver from Hartnell College in Salinas, Calif.
- Darryl Waters 6-foot-4, 245 pound strongside defensive end from Coffeyville Community College in Coffeyville, KS
- Andre Wilson 5-foot-10, 175 pound wide receiver from Trinity Valley Community College in Athens, TX
- Marquis Wimberly 6-foot, 200 pound wide receiver from Chaffey C.C. in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.
- Chris Woolbright 6-foot-3, 230 pound outside linebacker from Fresno City College in Fresno, Calif.
- Michael Wright 6-foot-4, 250 pound defensive end from Blinn College in Beaumont, Texas.
- *Keontre’ Toles 5-foot-9, 235 pound linebacker from Lafayette High in Oxford, MS
- *Kylen Binn 6-foot-6, 230 pound quarterback from Hutchinson Community College in Hutchinson, KS
- *Luke Long 6-foot-3, 290 pound offensive guard from Glencoe High in Gadsden, AL
- *Denzel Mitchell 5-foot-10, 197 pound running back from Hamilton High in Hamilton, AL
* Players are expected to sign as preferred walk-ons