Will No. 1 WR Ermon Lane Join David Cornwell at Alabama?

By Patrick Schmidt

Ermon Lane (Homestead, Fla. Homestead) is the No. 1 wide receiver in the 247Sports composite rankings with a top three of Alabama, Florida and Miami, but a recent commitment to the Crimson Tide may make Alabama his leader.

Alabama received a commitment from David Cornwell (Norman, Okla. Norman North) on Friday, and bringing in the No. 1 pocket-passer has to be a music to the ears of Lane, who has mentioned the importance that the quarterbacks at his suitors will play into his decision.

Florida has a commitment from No. 3 passer Will Grier (Davidson, S.C. Davidson Day) and Miami has a hard commit from Brad Kaaya (West Hills, Calif. Chaminade) and a soft verbal from dual-threat Alin Edouard (Hialeah, Fla. Hialeah).

Lane wants to go to a school that has a strong quarterback in place to deliver him the ball in a pro-style offense, and the biggest arm of the group is from Cornwell, with Alabama running a pro-style offense. That doesn’t mean he’s a clear favorite to head to Tuscaloosa, but it’s a strong recruiting pitch the next time Alabama and Lane speak.

Traditionally, it’s very difficult for recruits to leave the Sunshine State, but if there was one school to leave for, it would be for the winners of three of the last four BCS Championships. Cornwell undoubtedly turns into Alabama’s biggest recruiter for the 6-foot-3, 193-pound receiver along with Mario Cristobal and Billy Napier, and the school hopes Lane will be his No. 1 target for the next 3-4 years.

This race is far from over and besides the commitment of Cornwell, one big recruiting pitch from his in-state programs will come in the Florida-Miami game on Sep. 7, with the loser potentially moving down Lane’s list of finalists.

Each of the aforementioned schools present great fits for Lane, and his relationships with the coaching staffs and teammates will be imperative to his decision that probably won’t happen until after his high school season. However, If I’m making a prediction on the school that is the best fit for Lane to call home, it’s Alabama, where he and Cornwell could be the best quarterback-wide receiver tandem in the country by 2015.

Imagine how potent an offense would be with Amari Cooper, Robert Foster and Lane split out wide, along with O.J. Howard at tight end and T.J. Yeldon or Derrick Henry in the backfield, with Cornwell behind center. We know Alabama’s defense will rank among the best in the nation, but that offense would be sure to keep opposing defensive coordinators up at night.

Why wouldn’t Lane want to be a part of that offense on a team coached by Nick Saban that figures to be contending for BCS Championships his entire college career? That’s simply an offer he can’t refuse.

Patrick’s a college football writer for Rant Sports and radio host on Sportstownchicago.com. Follow him on Twitter @PatrickASchmidt and add him to your Google network.

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