Cameron Robinson, the best overall offensive tackle by Rivals.com and the best overall player in the country on 24-7 Sports in the Class of 2014, will hold back on his college commitment until next Wednesday. Robinson’s decision between LSU and Alabama was supposed to come down on Friday, but it will be delayed so that a national audience on ESPNU can witness one of the biggest commitments this year during the middle of next week.
The battle between both SEC West giants for Robinson has been nothing less than a dead heat. And with the bruising tackle visiting Tuscaloosa two weeks ago, that seems to still be the case for now. Robinson and five-star running back Leonard Fournette both headline the deepest supply of talent that the state of Louisiana has ever seen, and each of them are down to LSU and Alabama. The two went on the same recruiting trip to Alabama that weekend. It’s been believed that if LSU gets those two signatures, they will pass Alabama for the top class on some recruiting services.
Up until this week, Fournette and Robinson were supposed to commit at the same setting in January at the Under Armour All-American Game, but Robinson spoke on Twitter and said that he was ready to end the process. The last time a Louisiana product made a selection between LSU and Alabama it was defensive back Landon Collins in 2012. Collins, from Geismar (LA) Dutchtown chose Alabama over his mother’s wishes on ESPN’s national broadcast of the game.
LSU’s chances seem to be dwindling down for the 17 year old Robinson. Alabama recruited him harder earlier in the process than LSU, and his lead recruiter for the Tide, wide receivers coach Billy Napier has a lot going for him lately with the West Monroe tackle. Napier just landed a huge verbal commitment from Robinson’s close friend and former teammate at Ouachita Parish high in Monroe, wide receiver Cameron Sims, last Saturday.
Alabama might need Robinson even more than LSU, and that’s a great selling point for Napier and first year offensive line coach Mario Cristobal. It’s inevitable that left tackle Cyrus Kouandjio will forgo his senior season and declare himself eligible for the 2014 NFL Draft. Nick Saban and company have recruited heavy at that position but not to the degree of getting anyone Robinson’s caliber. Furthermore, six offensive linemen have been drafted since Saban came to Alabama, that’s not including Kouandjio and right guard Anthony Steen in April’s draft.
LSU’s opportunity to receive commitments from Louisiana’s finest, Fournette, wideouts Speedy Noil and Malachi Dupre, as well as Monroe (LA) Neville athlete Laurence Jones is keeping their chances at Robinson strongly alive. In Robinson’s case, blocking downhill for TJ Yeldon, Derrick Henry, Altee Tenpenny, Alvin Kamara and Bo Scarbrough at Alabama would be foolish to choose over. Alabama has assembled a solid O-line class, with center J.C. Hassenauer, Montel McBride, Viane Talamaivao and the recent commit of Cedar Falls (IA) high guard Ross Pierschbacher. Robinson would join Dominick Jackson, a junior college transfer as the only true tackles in the class.
Robinson grew up a diehard LSU fan, but he has given every indication that he’s looking at Alabama as a prospect alone. If Robinson made his college choice right now, it would probably be Alabama. Alabama’s program stands alone with what its accomplishments at present, and joining a coach like Saban as an offensive lineman is like a young adult male joining One Direction. Saban, joining with Frank Leahy, Bear Bryant and John McKay as the only coaches to win four national titles in the modern era, is something that has given Robinson a lot to sink his teeth into during his recruiting process.