Commentary

Top programs get top recuits

Alabama, Oregon, Tennessee among top programs who added top players during game

Originally Published: January 9, 2010
By Gerry Hamilton | Scouts Inc.

SAN ANTONIO -- The Alabama Crimson Tide, fresh off winning the national championship, received a commitment from four-star LB C.J. Mosley (Theodore, Ala./Theodore). Mosley, the No. 127 prospect in the ESPNU 150, had been long thought to be a lock for head coach Nick Saban's defense.

"It's just a great school," Mosley said. "I love the tradition. It's just a great school and I want to be a part of it. The last couple of months I zeroed in on Alabama."

Mosley becomes the 10th ESPNU 150 member to commit to Alabama. He is the lone linebacker in the class.

Arizona keeps top safety at home
The Arizona Wildcats scored a huge verbal on Saturday with the addition of three-star safety Marquis Flowers (Goodyear, Ariz./Millenium). The 6-foot-2, 195-pounder had reportedly been leaning to UCLA or USC at different times during the process, but the in-state Wildcats won out.

"I picked Arizona because when it came down to it, I just didn't want to go far from family and leave home," Flowers said. "It was the best school for me academically and Arizona is in my home state."

Flowers becomes the 21st commitment in the Wildcats' class.

Anderson picks West Virginia, but still taking trips
Safety Latwan Anderson (Cleveland/Glenville) made his chose West Virginia over Miami and Ohio State on Saturday, but he's still planning on taking more visits. "I picked West Virginia for the family environment mostly," Anderson said. "I liked the academics and I was real comfortable with the coaches and players. I didn't know until Wednesday night that I would pick West Virginia. I was really looking at Miami also."

Even though Anderson committed to the Mountaineers, he still intends to make at least one visit before signing day.

"I will probably visit North Carolina. It will either be next weekend or the weekend after," Anderson said.

Wright surprises with USC pick
Cornerback Demetrius Wright (Corona, Calif./Corona) surprised many on Saturday picking USC over Washington, Tennessee and Arizona. The No. 61 prospect in the ESPNU 150 was long thought to be leaning toward the Trojans, but coming on the heels of Pete Carroll heading to to the Seattle Seahawks came as a surprise.

Mathis goes against the grain
Cornerback Dior Mathis (Detroit, Mich./Cass Technical) was in the same position as defensive tackle William Campbell was a year ago. Last year, Campbell looked ready to leave the state, but then decided to stay home and play for Michigan.

This year, Mathis looked ready to leave the state, and he did. The four-star DB bucked the trend and picked Oregon over Michigan and Michigan State. The No. 106 prospect in the ESPNU 150 is a key get for the Ducks as they continue to compete nationally with the best. It also helps take the sting off a big loss last week when Oregon was in line to steal defensive tackle Dominique Easley (Staten Island, N.Y./Curtis) before he switched to Florida at the last second before the Under Armour All-America game.

The commitment of Mathis now gives the Ducks 16 commitments, and two ESPNU 150 recruits. Oregon is still in the running for four-star defensive end Owamagbe Odighizuwa (Portland, Ore./David Douglas) among others.

Willis picks Tennessee -- again
Defensive tackle Brandon Willis (Duncan, S.C./James Byrnes) picked the Tennessee Volunteers for a second time on Saturday after decommitting just days ago. The 6-2, 260-pounder was rumored to have given North Carolina serious thought, but Willis seemed destined for Knoxville.

The re-commitment of Willis comes a day after four-star safety Ahmad Dixon (Waco, Texas/Midway) backed out his Baylor commitment and chose the Volunteers.

Willis becomes the 23rd commitment for Tennessee, including the seventh off the ESPNU 150, as Tennessee continues its march towards a top-five recruiting class.

Gerry Hamilton has covered recruiting in Texas and the Southwest for more than a decade. He can be reached at espngerry@yahoo.com.

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