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SEC Recruiting Notebook: Will Sims Help Alabama Recruit Louisiana?

sec-recruiting-notebook-gfxAlabama hopes its commitment from Cameron Sims is just the beginning of a strong run in Louisiana.

Sims, who attends Ouachita Parish High School in Monroe, La., is ranked the nation’s No. 6 wide receiver and the No. 9 prospect in Louisiana by ESPN RecruitingNation. He committed to Alabama this week over offers from schools like Auburn, Georgia, Ole Miss, Tennessee, Notre Dame, Oklahoma State and Southern California.

Alabama has turned its interest to Sims’ list of friends, which includes offensive lineman Cameron Robinson from West Monroe (La.) High School and safety Laurence “Hootie” Jones from Neville High School in Monroe.

Sims said on ESPN he’s spoken to Robinson about joining him at Alabama.

“Hopefully big Cam comes where I’m at,” Sims said. “We talked about it a lot. Hopefully he can come be with me at Bama nation. Big Cam, you need to come with me.”

There’s reason to be optimistic Sims can help the Crimson Tide land Robinson. The two are good friends, according to Sims, and Robinson has shown a strong interest in Alabama.

“We’re real close,” Robinson said. “I grew up with Cameron. Growing up, we lived maybe 30 seconds away from each other. He was like my little brother. We played basketball and football together growing up. I talk to him almost every day.”

Robinson, who’s ranked the nation’s No. 1 offensive tackle by ESPN, will announce his decision on Wednesday. It looks like an Alabama-LSU battle for Robinson, who has visited both schools multiple times.

The New Orleans Times-Picayune ranked Robinson behind only running back Leonard Fournette in its “Nifty 50″ in the state of Louisiana.

“Making an argument for Robinson being No. 1 is very feasible here. After all, he is at one of most valued positions in all of football, offensive tackle, and Fournette is a running back, which is generally viewed as less valuable for various reasons. Add in the fact Robinson is a tremendous tackle prospect with a rare blend of size, attitude and athleticism and you have a real race on your hands for the No. 1 prospect in the state.”

The hype surrounding Robinson shouldn’t imply Sims was offered a scholarship just to land his friend. Sims is a talented receiver who believes he can help Alabama right away.

“Seeing Amari Cooper and Kenny Bell do that, it makes me believe I can go out there and play as a freshman,” Sims said. “I can do big things like they did.”

Alabama’s class will have the potential to do big things if it continues the momentum its built in recruiting. The Crimson Tide has the nation’s top-ranked class by Rivals.

Prospects like Robinson and Harris will be key in Alabama going for another recruiting national championship. Like Robinson, Harris has strong interest in Alabama and LSU.

“Alabama and LSU are the top two for me right now,” he told Rivals. “It’s pretty much just them, but I like TCU. I don’t really know when I will make my decision. I’ll commit whenever it hits me. I talk to Alabama a lot more than I talk to anyone. I don’t know if you can say they are recruiting me the hardest, but I do talk to them more. Alabama and LSU are pretty much equal.”

 

Receiver Bone chooses Kentucky

The Wildcats might have pulled off a steal when they convinced wide receiver Blake Bone from Woodruff (S.C.) to commit to Kentucky this week.

Bone, who’s ranked the nation’s No. 47 wide receiver by Rivals, chose Kentucky over offers from Arkansas, Ole Miss, South Carolina, Clemson, Louisville and North Carolina. It was the South Carolina offer that appeared to be the toughest to overcome.

“I fell in love with South Carolina, my home-state school, but I didn’t think that was necessarily the best fit for me, and I thought UK throws it a lot more there in the Air Raid and has got new coaches and everything,” Bone told the Louisville Courier-Journal. “There are so many opportunities for me to go down there and blossom as a receiver and develop and try to get to my full potential.

“(Receivers) coach (Tommy) Mainord is a great guy. I think he can develop me and get me where I need to be as a receiver so I can be productive in the offense and hopefully win games in Lexington.”

Bone’s commitment to Kentucky ends a bit of a dry spell for the Wildcats on the recruiting trail. He’s the first prospect to commit to Kentucky’s 2014 class since receiver Garrett Johnson from Winter Garden, Fla., gave his pledge on July 27.

Kentucky has 23 commitments for the 2014 class, which is ranked No. 7 in the nation by Rivals.

 

Jalen Hurd

Tennessee running back commitment Jalen Hurd’s high school career came to an end this week when he decided to have surgery to repair a minor labrum tear in his right shoulder.

He suffered the injury playing for Beech High School in Hendersonville, Tenn., on Sunday.

Hurd decided to go ahead and have surgery so he will be healthy when he enrolls at Tennessee in January.

“It’s unfortunate but I’m just going to keep my head high and just deal with this surgery and come back as strong as I can and just look forward to going to UT,” Hurd told The Tennessean.

Hurd had surgery in December on a different injury in the same shoulder. That was after he rushed for a state-record 3,357 yards and 43 touchdowns last season.

Hurd could have tried to play through the injury but was advised to take care of the injury before it became worse.

“They said it wouldn’t be smart (to play this season),” Hurd said. “I could injure myself worse. I do have a future in college. The smart thing would be to get the surgery now.”

 

LSU: Noil’s favorite?

LSU appears to be the favorite to land highly-touted wide receiver Speedy Noil from Edna Karr High School in New Orleans.

Texas A&M has been a factor along with Florida and USC, but LSU is the team to watch, according to 247Sports.

“Despite Texas A&M lingering, we’re hearing that LSU has become the clear leader for Noil and he’ll eventually join an already stellar wide receiver class,” the site reports.

Noil, who’s ranked the nation’s No. 1 receiver by 247Sports, would join LSU wide receiver commitments D.J. Clark from Alexandria, La., Trey Quinn from Lake Charles, La., and Tony Upchurch from Pearland, Texas.

 

Newell set to announce

Defensive lineman Peyton Newell from Hiawatha (Kan.) High School will announce his decision this afternoon at 4:00 eastern time.

Newell will choose between South Carolina, Kansas, Kansas State and Nebraska. He has already made a decision but hasn’t given a hint on the choice.

“I felt it was the best place for me,” he said of the school.

 


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