Suddenly running backs are committing all over the place.
Justin Taylor, a junior at Atlanta’s Booker T. Washington High, committed to Alabama on Monday. He is the third Georgia back in a week to make a decision and the second in that span to choose the Crimson Tide.
Hillgrove’s Kenyan Drake committed to Alabama one week ago and Stephenson’s Mike Davis committed to Florida on Saturday. Including the commitment of Matt Jones of Seffner, Fla., to Florida last week, that’s four major 2012 running backs off the board in a week’s time — in February!
“Alabama was my number one school, so I felt like, why wait? That’s the school I want to be at,” Taylor said Monday afternoon. “When I found out they were as interested in me as I was in them I didn’t hesitate. I knew that’s where I wanted to go.”
Taylor said he has been a Crimson Tide fan since about the ninth grade. But he had never been to the Tuscaloosa campus until he attended their junior camp this past Saturday. At the time he wasn’t really sure where he stood.
“When I was there, Coach [Nick] Saban was talking to me and telling me everything that I needed to know,” he said. “I decided then that I was going to go ahead and commit because that’s the school I wanted to be at. But they didn’t offer me until this morning. My recruiting coach hit me up on Facebook and told me to give him a call. When I did, he handed the phone to Coach Saban and that’s when he told and I jumped right on it.”
Taylor (5-foot-11, 215 pounds) rushed for 1,500 yards and 11 touchdowns in just 10 games last season, Pritchett said. He also had 15 catches for another 150 yards.
“I think he’ll fit in their system really well.” said Washington High coach Stanley Pritchett. “He’s kind of an all-in-one back with power, speed and balance. They compare him to Mark Ingram with some of the things he can do.”
Recruiting interest in Taylor picked up only recently. He landed the offer from the Crimson Tide after attending their junior day this past weekend. His other offers were from Arkansas and Georgia Tech. He said Gerogia had just started to show some interest.
“If I had never gotten an offer from Alabama, I was looking at Florida and Georgia Tech,” Taylor said. “Georgia Tech could have possibly ended up being where I went. But I didn’t really want to be close to home. I wanted to go away to college.”
Taylor said he didn’t have a problem with the fact that Drake had already committed to play the same position at Alabama.
“Nah,” he said. “I love the idea of being teammates with him. I know Kenyan. We’ve talked a bunch of times. I can sit there and talk to him like family. If we have to compete with each other, no problem.”
By Chip Towers, The College Recruiting Blog.