You lose one, you gain one. In this case, the Tigers gained a great one at a position they sorely need. Consensus 4* cornerback John Broussard of Phenix City made his commitment to the Tigers official this morning in a ceremony at his high school.
Broussard made numerous visits to Auburn before his announcement. Some thought it was telling that he chose to go to Mississippi State for their spring game vs coming to Auburn for A-Day, but the proximity to Auburn means that Broussard really knew everything he needed to know about Auburn. He attended a few games last season, so A-Day would have been nothing new.
According to his 247Sports composite profile, Broussard is the 8th best cornerback prospect in the nation. He is the fourth best athlete in the state of Alabama. At 6'0, 164 lbs he fits in with Auburn's other DBs in terms of height, but he likely needs to gain a little more weight before getting serious playing time in the SEC. I'm sure that's something Strength and Conditioning Coach Ryan Russell can help with.
When Can We Expect to See Him On the Field?
It's hard to assess what type of immediate impact Broussard would have on the team. Auburn signed a number of defensive backs last season who have yet to see the field for us to gauge their talent level. However, with Josh Holsey and Jay Jones being Seniors, it means both starting cornerback positions will be up for grabs after next fall.
Current Sophomores Stephen Roberts and Nick Ruffin will probably make strong pushes for the job, and then there are incoming freshmen Jeremiah Dinson and Carlton Davis. I don't think Broussard will make an immediate contribution as a true freshman, but the opportunity will be there. Especially since none of the current Juniors on the team have made a big push for playing time to this point.
I really like the video of him, below. It looks like he has very good vision and very good patience in waiting for the right route to attack the ball carrier. And if he's not there in time, he lays out to still make the stop. He seems to have good awareness of the field, keeping his eye on the play and coming back to make or assist tackles when the play does not involve the man he was covering.
Where the 2016 Class Stands
With Craig-Myers' decommitment, Auburn's class fell back to 36th in the nation and 12th in the SEC. It jumps back up to 27th ahead of Michigan and behind Notre Dame with the Broussard commitment. That sentence tells you all you really need to know about recruiting at this point of the year. Big Cat Weekend is coming up at the end of the month, and Auburn could pick up a few commitments from big-time prospects that weekend that would vault the Tigers up in the rankings. It's May and Auburn has six commitments. The Tigers will probably add at least 16 more before the cycle is complete in February.