The nation’s top recruit in the 247Sports composite rankings, Cameron Robinson (West Monroe, La. West Monroe), committed to Alabama over the in-state program at LSU ending the recruitment for the highly coveted left tackle.
Rated as a consensus five-star recruit, the 6-foot-5, 330-pound offensive lineman has been given a franchise designation by 247Sports with a rating greater than 100. Notable recruits to carry a grade north of 100 include Robert Nkemdiche, Jadeveon Clowney and Cyrus Kouandjio.
The pursuit for Robinson has gone back and forth between the in-state Tigers and Alabama, where his sister is a student, but after four visits to Tuscaloosa this spring to only two to Baton Rouge the tide began to shift. His most recent visit was to Alabama Aug. 17 and the commitment of former teammate and close friend Cameron Sims Aug. 24 further cemented his place with Alabama.
When Mario Cristobal was hired as offensive line coach in February restocking the line was his top priority after losing three All-Americans. He has done just that with an ensemble of talent up and down the line, but none are in the same once-in-a-decade mold as Robinson.
Robinson should step right into the vacant left tackle spot when Kouandijo is expected to declare for the NFL Draft after his junior season. Fittingly the highest ranked offensive lineman recruit since Kouandijo will be his replacement along the Alabama line. Robinson dominated the competition at Nike’s “The Opening” this summer and displayed the nimble feet and reactionary skills to accompany his exceptional size and strength.
The Louisiana connection with Sims and fellow Pelican State natives Kenny Bell, Raheem Falkins and Denzel Devall was an important factor in Robinson’s decision. However, the biggest factor is Alabama’s success of developing recruits into eventual NFL draft picks, and that is what won Robinson over.
Alabama churns out NFL offensive linemen like McDonald’s does hamburgers. In the time Nick Saban has been the head coach at Alabama, he has seen six of his offensive linemen drafted and that doesn’t include Kouandijo and All-American right guard Anthony Steen.
Conversely, in the time since Saban left LSU the Bayou Bengals have only seen two taken in the draft. Herman Johnson was a fifth round pick in 2009 and Joseph Barksdale was a late third round pick in 2011. Alabama had two taken in the top 11 last year alone and have four taken in the first round since 2009.
Alabama has held the No. 1 class for much of the summer according to 247Sports, but they still lacked a franchise left tackle. With Robinson added to this class the Crimson Tide should have the No. 1 class locked down on signing day for the fourth year in a row.
A fellow Louisiana recruit with a franchise rating, Leonard Fournette, potentially could join him at Alabama where the Crimson Tide will host the nation’s top running back for an official this fall.
Robinson is scheduled to graduate early and will enroll at Alabama for the winter semester.
The rich get richer with Alabama landing Robinson as the Crimson Tide picked up another win over the rival Tigers with it looking like no one can stop Alabama on the field and on the recruiting trail.