Dalvin Tomlinson’s connection to Alabama ‘grayshirt scandal’ (UPDATED)

Dalvin Tomlinson, who picked Alabama over Georgia Tech and UGA on signing day, was not connected to the Crimson Tide’s “grayshirting” scandal, according to his coach.

Two longtime Alabama commitments (both recovering from knee injuries) were told only weeks before signing day by Nick Saban that they couldn’t sign with the Crimson Tide this year. Both were given the option to “grayshirt” or delay enrolling at Alabama in 2013.

If you commit to Nick Saban, it’s safe unless you get injured or Alabama has the opportunity to upgrade at your position before you officially sign the paperwork (AP)

What we learned: If you commit to Nick Saban, it’s safe unless you get injured or Alabama has the opportunity to upgrade at your position before you officially sign the paperwork (AP)

Justin Taylor, a running back from North Atlanta High School, was apparently no longer needed after Alabama upgraded at the position when 5-star RB TJ Yeldon flipped from Auburn to the Crimson Tide. Taylor, who missed most of his senior season with a knee injury, ended up signing with Kentucky and had some strong comments for Saban: “[As] far as pulling the scholarship, I think they did me wrong. I was the No. 7 to commit, that’s all I’ve got to say. I was committed to them for a year. They could’ve handled it better.” (Click on story link)

Meanwhile, Darius Philon is the “story that won’t go away,” according to a Sunday column by al.com’s Mike Herndon. Philon, a defensive lineman from Prichard, Ala., injured his knee toward the end of his senior season. On signing day, Philon put on an Alabama baseball cap at an emotional ceremony [see video below] but ended up signing hours later with Arkansas – a school he never visited. Philon’s coach told al.com “He had the world snatched up from under him.” Philon was apparently no longer needed after Alabama upgraded at the position with defensive linemen Dalvin Tomlinson and Korren Kirven.

We addressed the Tomlinson-for-Philon rumors with Henry County coach Mike Rozier over the weekend.

  • How did Dalvin end up going to Alabama? Did it have anything to do with Alabama offering a “grayshirt” to another player? “From day one, Dalvin was going to Alabama. He kept delaying and everything, and it got kind of close with the scholarship numbers. But Nick wanted Dalvin from day one. He was Nick’s boy. Coach Saban fell in love with him a long time ago. Alabama never waived on that kid. There was no ‘grayshirt’ mention with Dalvin whatsoever by Alabama. All that other stuff is rumor and speculation … Dalvin always had a scholarship at Alabama. That thing that happened over at North Atlanta [Justin Taylor], that wasn’t the same thing here. Dalvin always had a a scholarship to Alabama.”
  • What about Alabama’s scholarship numbers? “I kept hearing everybody say that Alabama was getting close to being full and telling me ‘You need to do something, if that is where Dalvin wants to go.’ Alabama was Dalvin’s No. 1 choice but he didn’t want to rush things. I know Alabama was close to being full. Dalvin actually committed to Coach Saban when he made an in-home visit on MLK Day [on Jan. 16] but he wanted to keep it a secret until signing day.”
  • For an elite prospect, Dalvin never seemed to the flashy type or want the media attention. Why do you think Dalvin kept it a secret for three more weeks? “I asked him that. He just wanted to make sure on his part. On Alabama’s part of the deal, there was never any hesitation. They always wanted him. When it got close with the numbers at Alabama and he needed to do something, Dalvin committed. But he wanted to keep it a secret and that I can’t answer. I don’t know why.”
    AJC Super 11 DE Dalvin Tomlinson was "Nick's boy" all along, claims his coach (AJC)

    AJC Super 11 DE Dalvin Tomlinson was "Nick's boy" all along, claims his coach (AJC)

  • Who else knew Dalvin had committed to Alabama weeks ago? “I’m the only one he told at first. He finally fessed up to [Georgia Tech assistant Joe Speed] a few days before signing day about where he was going. Coach Speed honored his wishes by keeping it a secret. Now I can’t answer why Dalvin wanted to wait until signing day. He couldn’t give me an answer on that. But our timing had nothing to do with [Philon] because Dalvin always had an Alabama offer. Alabama was the most truthful school in the recruiting process. They were the most honest. They didn’t pester him and they didn’t bug him. That was one big thing that Dalvin liked about Alabama – that they didn’t downgrade other programs. Coach Saban spoke very highly of other programs, especially Georgia and Georgia Tech. And Dalvin, with the type of character he has, he appreciated that. Alabama didn’t play any games with him.”
  • Are you talking about Georgia Tech and UGA? “It was more Georgia Tech than Georgia. Dalvin wasn’t upfront with Coach Speed until right before the dead period. Coach Speed just thought the numbers didn’t look good at Alabama and that they were holding a spot for him at Georgia Tech.
  • What about UGA? “I think when Dalvin didn’t go on his official visit there, they got the hint. Dalvin did have a family problem [which made him cancel], but the signs were there when he didn’t go to UGA on the official visit or make plans to reschedule it. I guess they got the idea then. He wasn’t upfront with them … Dalvin really liked [UGA RB coach Bryan McClendon]. He said if McClendon was the defensive line coach, he might’ve considered going to Georgia. He thought very highly of Coach McClendon and developed a relationship with him. But he’s the running backs coach. When I say that, Alabama was his No. 1 school all along. I don’t know why he waited it out but he was never going to Georgia or Georgia Tech.”

Other items on “the story that won’t go away”

Justin Taylor on Bama: "... they did me wrong. I was the No. 7 to commit, that’s all I’ve got to say. I was committed to them for a year. They could’ve handled it better.”  (AJC)

Justin Taylor on Bama: "... they did me wrong. I was the No. 7 to commit, that’s all I’ve got to say. I was committed to them for a year. They could’ve handled it better.” (AJC)

  • The moral of this story: If you commit to Alabama, it’s safe unless you get injured or Alabama has the opportunity to upgrade at your position before you officially sign the paperwork.
  • Kevin Scarbinsky of the Birmingham News: “Call me cynical, but there’s no question that Philon and Taylor were more committed to Alabama than Alabama was to them when better players lined up to take their place. And yet, despite stories like Philon’s and Taylor’s, an awful lot of prospects can’t wait to play for Alabama … What does it all mean? When Saban’s process is good, it’s very good. When it goes bad, Alabama goes on, and some young men go away.”
  • Al.com’s Mike Herndon: “All verbal commitments are non-binding, even from coaches who claim to be “old-fashioned” and believe “a commitment is a commitment.” On Wednesday, Saban praised the players who had stuck by their commitments to Alabama in this year’s class, calling it “a positive thing for us in terms of managing our recruiting this year.” What his actions have told future recruits, however, is that if you get hurt, that commitment isn’t necessarily a two-way street.”
  • One thing that might’ve been overlooked by many from the Justin Taylor story was the conversation between North Atlanta coach Stanley Prichett and Chris Rumph, the Alabama assistant in charge of botching Taylor’s situation. When they talked on signing day, Rumph apparently was putting pressure on Justin to make a decision for Feb. 2013 — which is a year away. Said Prichett: “[Rumph] asked what Justin was going to do because they wanted to go after some other people.”
  • Apparently, no one asked Saban about Justin Taylor or Darius Philon at Alabama’s signing day press conference. However, Saban may have alluded to both when he said this: “I think basically what we did was, because of the cynical attitude people have towards whether coaches are really doing what’s in the best interest of the young people that we coach, which I sort of resent, to be honest with you, because that’s one of the things that we pride ourselves in, we actually took some opportunities away from guys that really wanted to come to Alabama that we couldn’t sign, and they couldn’t come here because we couldn’t offer that [sign and grayshirt] option to them.” Note: The AJC requested an interview with Saban last week to give his version of events with Taylor or his recruiting tactics in general. We’re awaiting his response.

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1,172 comments Add your comment

bigtime

February 6th, 2012
3:42 pm

“Rick James

February 6th, 2012
3:34 pm
@bigtime

@Rick James…. Yeah, because winning a National Championship isn’t as important as UGA winning the SEC Least … UGA logic in a nuttshell. I wonder how some of you make it through life.
———————————————————————————————————————————————–
You completly missed my point which is why I will say again that you nothing about about football.So I wont bother telling you that had Oklahoma State not been upset you would not have been in the game.”

Really? Wow you are a genius. You should be analyzing games in a booth somewhere, not on a blog.

Boise

February 6th, 2012
3:42 pm

@ Sam. Wish I could….Live there now. Worst place on earth….

Brainiac(Dawg for life/Richt fan for life)

February 6th, 2012
3:43 pm

@ Bammer:

Speaking of cherry picking why do y’all brush off CMR kicking Grayshirt Saban’s a$$ 3 of the 4 times they met head to head. Also CMR has a better winning percentage than any SEC coach.I know. I know. It’s the schedule stupid. We don’t make the schedules but thanks to the schedulers that arranged our 3 of 4 of the above referenced butt kickings. Do they just count when Saban wins or are y’all not ashammed of such pathetic showings. Most of y’all couldn’t find your a$$ with both hands in your hip pockets. Y’all are living in single digit IQ country. Trailer dwellers all.

Crimson Crush

February 6th, 2012
3:43 pm

@WDE

No one did anything to Curry’s window or his bag sacking wife . It is a fiction that has been replayed to the point of becoming absurd fact to the clueless and wilfully gullible . What you will find are people , so called journalist included repeating it as folk legend .Your “good guy” Curry has allowed it to continue but he is VERY careful about popping that lie too often directly out of his own mouth . Thanks for playing ;-)

AJCwithyetanotherhackjob

February 6th, 2012
3:44 pm

@ Inquiring Minds

It’s called getting a loan on projected income. Happens all the time. And to bring out blatant trash such as multiple failed drug tests by Trent Richardson is pathetic. Please prove that. I really hope for your sake you’re just trying to get a rise out of people and you aren’t actually that close-minded.

Boise

February 6th, 2012
3:44 pm

Evergreen, Enterprise, Clio, Opelika, Troy, Muscle Shoals… The whole damn place is nothing but a truck stop.

bigtime

February 6th, 2012
3:45 pm

@Boise…How would you know? Your chicken poo team is scare to come to Bama to play. Sure you guys beat UGA, but so did every other decent team that has played them in the last 5 years.

bigtime

February 6th, 2012
3:45 pm

Louisiana Monroe

February 6th, 2012
3:46 pm

Talk crap to me bandwagon Bamer fans! Louisiana Monroe owns Bama!

Crimson Crush

February 6th, 2012
3:46 pm

Brainiac … do we really need to start back through statistical analysis … again and again … and again … explaining what a freaking sample size is and what the significance is to your dumba** … Really ??

Vince Dooley is God

February 6th, 2012
3:46 pm

What bout them hairy stanky Dwags 30 somethin years ago. We had ol Bucky Blue… aka stoner. We had Lindsey, (yes that was his name) Scott, and the man the myth the second coming…Hershal Freakin Walker. The one hit wonder team that will never happen again. RTR beeotches

bigtime

February 6th, 2012
3:46 pm

2007 sure seems like light years away right now, doesn’t it?

Boise

February 6th, 2012
3:47 pm

Birmingham is a DUMP!!

BamaGuy

February 6th, 2012
3:47 pm

Boise….Now that really does suck…You are so low in life that you can’t relocate to a place you want to be….What is the problem? Are you scared you may not get food stamps, welfare or is it that you just can’t seem to get on your feet? No education? No drive to be happy? Wow…You need to stop worrying about Alabama and start figuring out why you have no options in life but to be miserable….Therapist anyone?

Philip Phulmer

February 6th, 2012
3:47 pm

I’m digging up dirt on y’all again!

Boise

February 6th, 2012
3:47 pm

Montgomery is Detroit South.

Boise

February 6th, 2012
3:49 pm

Mobile is a paper plant

The Bear

February 6th, 2012
3:50 pm

Potatoes’ anyone?

Bama Fans....

February 6th, 2012
3:50 pm

great tradition, but too illiterate, and too busy killing trees and teabagging other men to know how many National Championships they have.

14 is only recognized by this great mass of uneducated human debris.

One Example – Look it up Bama fans. Know that truth. As much as you cheat, you really should only claim the ones you win.

1941 National Championship- The AP ranked Alabama 20th in the nation with 14 teams with better records in the top 20. Once again it is the Football Thesaurus that retroactively awards it. Alabama finished 3rd in the SEC that year. Mississippi State won the SEC title..yet Bama claims a National title.

Boise

February 6th, 2012
3:51 pm

Huntsville is about the only place I think that’s even close to decent. The rest of the state is just a bunch of trashy dirt farmers, and an occasional Craker Barrell.

Crimson Crush

February 6th, 2012
3:52 pm

Georgia was the “almost but we got ripped off by ESPN” national champion of 2009 . I read that on AJC somewhere . Tech … ermmm … they still have a football or two , a complete “Be Your Own Pee Wee Team” set of equipment and some folding aluminum bleachers I am pretty sure … ;-)

Bama Fans....

February 6th, 2012
3:54 pm

1930 National Championship- The Davis poll says that Bama tied Notre Dame for NC this year. This was the only one to award it to Bama. Notre Dame was named NC in 6 polls! Parke Davis is another retroactive system! He (an individual, not an organization) did his in 1933!

Bama Fans....

February 6th, 2012
3:55 pm

1973 National Championship- AP puts Bama 4th after their bowl game loss. Bama claims a NC from the UPI poll that was taken before they met Notre Dame in the bowl game and lost. There were 3 teams with better records than Bama that year. The embarrassment of naming Alabama number one caused the UPI to name champions after bowl games. Yet Bammer has no shame in claiming it of course.

Crimson Crush

February 6th, 2012
3:56 pm

add a C in CraCker and take that extra L off Barrel there “Boise” . Looks bad when your misspelled words pile up like a multi-car crash on I-75 ;-)

Crimson Crush

February 6th, 2012
3:58 pm

Yawn … another cut and paste spammer too lazy to do their own research , typing or creative thought ….

Bama Mike

February 6th, 2012
3:58 pm

Not to rub salt on an open wound. But charges against Alabama’s Dre Kirkpatrick have been dropped. Also early freshman T.J Yelton who enrolled early has but on about 10 lbs of muscle and now most recruiting servies consider him the number 1 running back in the U.S. The good news just doesnt stop.

Jenkins

February 6th, 2012
3:59 pm

Bama is obsessed with Georgia.

Jenkins

February 6th, 2012
4:00 pm

Truth be told, all SEC schools are loser schools whose academic purpose is a sham. Maybe save Vanderbilt. The rest of you should be ashamed of your Jim Crowe system.

BamaGuy

February 6th, 2012
4:00 pm

No We are obesessed with winning which has NOTHING to do with Georgia

sam

February 6th, 2012
4:00 pm

@Bama Fans since you are so determined to talk about Bama championships why don’t we do this, we will only talk about championships that have been awarded since the inception of the poll system. These are NCs recognized by everyone as being legitimate. Using this criteria, Bama has 9 NCs recognized by all which is the most of any school in the post poll era. Now shut the hell up.

Ballz licked, legs humped

February 6th, 2012
4:00 pm

Sweet Home Alabama, where the skies are so blue, Lord I’m comin home to you. Where the hell is Idaho?

6IML

February 6th, 2012
4:00 pm

The jealousy (and subsequent hate) of BAMA has reached an all-time high today. This is quite pitiful.

Daniel

February 6th, 2012
4:01 pm

I’m trying to find a link or a source that shows Saban pulled Philon or Taylor’s offer. I can’t. Everything that keeps coming up says he offered (or switched to) a grayshirt. That’s not pulling an offer. That’s asking them to delay entry by six months.

BamaGuy

February 6th, 2012
4:01 pm

obsessed…sorry

Brainiac(Dawg for life/Richt fan for life)

February 6th, 2012
4:02 pm

@ Sam:

What are you so damn proud of in that state? Only a third of the population has learned to walk upright and the only two words most have learned to say are trailer and football. Someone should have explained to the Alabama 1978 class valedictorian that it’s alright to poison someone elses trees but don’t go public bragging about it

Dmitri

February 6th, 2012
4:04 pm

Hating on your neighbor, very uncouth. Good luck.

Son of Roaring Dan

February 6th, 2012
4:05 pm

Nick Saban RULES. Now he just mindwarped the Florida police and they dropped the charges against Kirkpatrick. They simply can’t withstand Saban’s evil plan to take over the universe.

Ballz licked, legs humped

February 6th, 2012
4:05 pm

The fact, is back in 1642, the Santa Maria poll voted the Dwags 2 places ahead of Kentucky after the Dwags beat the little thingies in a closet. How bout that Bama fan.

Special K

February 6th, 2012
4:06 pm

Keep it coming pups! 18 pages. Did a pups loss get this many pages. lol

sam

February 6th, 2012
4:08 pm

Brainiac, this just tops them all. someone from ga making fun of someone from another state. except for atlanta, ga is as backwoods and backwards as any state in the union. you have been to ga, haven’t you?

seriously

February 6th, 2012
4:08 pm

jenkins must be a carpetbaggin fan of the big 10….the equivelant to high school football in SEC territory

Ballz licked, legs humped

February 6th, 2012
4:09 pm

Fact # 2… In the year BC 0118, a Roman poll had the Dwags #1 in penis envy and #150 in football.

Bama Fans....

February 6th, 2012
4:10 pm

Sam,

I’m good with 9.
The rest of the country just gets tired of the fake ones, the tree killings, and sexual assualt of other men by you Bama fans.

6IML

February 6th, 2012
4:11 pm

The saddest part of this whole thing is that many UGA fans are genuinely anger and frustrated. While posting on this blog should serve as therapy, it’s probably just making you guys angrier.

Blackoutanyone?

February 6th, 2012
4:11 pm

SEC Championships UGA 12 Bama 22
National Champions UGA 2 Bama 14

But the dawgs lead Bama in one category

Major NCAA violation cases UGA 6 Bama 4

Boise

February 6th, 2012
4:12 pm

8=======~~~~~ :BAMAFAN

TED CRISTOBAL

February 6th, 2012
4:14 pm

@0I HAWK….BAMA,TUSCA”LOOSERS”, HARRY UPDYKE AND TEABAGGERS NATION CAN WIN 14 NC TITLE OR EVEN GAZILLION OF THEM…BUT SABAN AND THE REST OF THEIR FAN CAN NEVER WIN INTEGRITY AND DIGNITY. WIN AT ALL COST ATTITUDE.ENOUGH SAID.

Ballz licked, legs humped

February 6th, 2012
4:14 pm

Fact # 3. In the year 1256, the Viking Super Poll had Jaw Jaw # 1 in Dream Team mental masterbation and #206 in Football, behind Vandy at #205

#1bamafan

February 6th, 2012
4:14 pm

RTR….Have a good day!

6IML

February 6th, 2012
4:14 pm

When UGA fans argue with GT fans, Atlanta is a cesspool and dump. Then, when UGA fans want to berate Alabama, the state of Georgia (including Atlanta) is so great. Without Atlanta, Georgia is North Dakota.