The top linebacker in the country, and one of the best players overall regardless of position, Reuben Foster, is stumped.
Earlier in the year, Foster knew he would be playing for the Alabama Crimson Tide next season. Not long after that, Foster made a very public switch to the Tide’s hated in-state rival, the Auburn Tigers. Now, Foster has once again decided to open things up.
Foster has indicated he would have stuck with Auburn had they retained the coach who was recruiting him, Trooper Taylor. Taylor is being investigated by the NCAA for possible recruiting violations, and new coach Gus Malzahn didn’t see the present and future headaches with Taylor as worth the trouble, even if it meant losing Foster.
So now Foster, with his gigantic AU tattoo on his forearm, is back on the market. Where oh where will this talented ‘backer play?
Seven schools are theoretically in the mix. The Georgia Bulldogs, LSU Tigers, Miami Hurricanes, Washington Huskies, South Carolina Gamecocks, Auburn and ‘Bama. The biggest factor for deciding his school? Relationships.
Foster was headed to Auburn strictly because of his relationship with Taylor. Foster has already indicated that wherever Taylor ends up, he’ll immediately consider that school. The thing is, there’s no guarantee that Taylor will even have a job by National Signing Day considering his trouble with the big, bad, NCAA.
Georgia has a shot. Foster, from Auburn High School in Auburn, Alabama, had originally played his prep ball in the Peach State, before moving. He’s familiar with the state and it’s illustrious program, and is also very close with two current Bulldog commits (safety Tray Matthews and cornerback Shaq Wiggins).
The LSU Tigers also have a good chance because of the relationship Foster has with the Tigers enormous fullback J.C. Copeland. Foster and Copeland once lived together a long time ago, and Foster considers Copeland to be as close to a brother as possible without actually sharing the same blood.
Official visits will play a big factor in his decision making process. He’s scheduled to visit Washington January 11th, and has indicated he will also visit LSU, Miami and Georiga. He’s stated he might visit South Carolina, and possibly visit the school that Taylor lands at.
So by sifting through some of the politically correct nonsense, lets really break it down. Foster isn’t going to go to South Carolina (if they had a chance, he’d be certain he wants to visit), Washington (no way he moves that far from his family) or Auburn (no Taylor). The only reason he’s considering Miami is because his hero is Ray Lewis, and I doubt that will be enough to sell Foster on ‘The U’. That leaves Alabama, LSU and Georgia. Copeland is going to be a senior next year, not giving the two much opportunity to play together, so I’ll nix LSU as well.
So we’re down to ‘Bama and Georgia. The location of both schools are ideal for Foster, who has a four year old daughter, A’Ziya. Considering his daughter, he’ll want and need to be near his family.
So it’ll really come down to who has the strongest relationship with Foster come National Signing Day. I truly believe it’ll be either ‘Bama or UGA. And my hunch? He goes back to the school he first wanted to play for: The University of Alabama.