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Auburn Football Recruiting: Huge Opportunity Today

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The Tigers are hot on the recruiting trail and a win today could keep the good times rolling.

Auburn is trying to make a late push for elite 4* CB Kelvin Joseph.
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The Iron Bowl is always a big game. It’s one of the fiercest rivalries in all of college football with a year’s worth of bragging rights on the line. But this year the game is even bigger as it features two top 10 teams and the SEC West title on the line. Winner gets a trip to the SEC Championship and keeps their College Football Playoff hopes alive.

But it’s not just on the field in 2017 that this game will have major ramifications but in future recruiting classes as well. The Tigers will once again welcome some of the top prospects in all of the country in the 2018, 2019 and 2020 classes to Jordan-Hare Stadium to watch Auburn play in another big time game. Two weeks ago, the Tigers were in a similar situation with #1 Georgia coming to town and tons of top prospects visiting. Auburn took care of business and it helped result in Auburn landing 4* CB Christian Tutt. The Tigers are hoping for a repeat performance both on the field and off the field this Saturday.

Thanks to 247’s Keith Niebuhr, SECCountry’s Benjamin Wolk and AL.com’s James Crepea here’s a look at who is expected on the Plains today to witness the 2017 Iron Bowl.

Official Visitors

You probably won’t find a better collection of official visitors anywhere this Saturday than the group heading to Auburn. The Tigers will be hosting the #2 offensive guard in the country, the #2 ranked tight end in the country, the #5 outside linebacker in the country and the #1 ranked junior college cornerback. Not bad at all.

The most interesting official visitor this weekend is Luke Ford. One of the top tight end prospects officially visiting Auburn might be a bit surprising. However, Ford visited over the summer and came away very impressed. The Tigers are probably on the outside looking in for Ford who appears to be an Alabama-Georgia battle but getting an official visit means they still have some sort of a shot. The truth is neither Alabama nor Georgia have done a great job of getting the ball to their tight ends either so maybe the staff can convince the talented Illinois native that he could have role in this offense if they can get someone with his skillset. Either way, doesn’t hurt to get a visit and an electric atmosphere paired with an Auburn victory could turn this into a 3 team race.

The two other official visitors to keep a close eye on this weekend are Channing Tindall and Saivion Smith. Auburn was one of the first teams to offer Tindall and were one of his top teams over the summer. But the Tigers have not been able to get him back on campus and have since fallen behind Georgia, South Carolina and Florida. But a home run visit this weekend could help the Tigers get back into the race.

Smith is a former LSU signee who transferred before the 2017 football season. He’s now considered a major Alabama lean but Auburn is hoping to change that this weekend. If possible, the Tigers want to take 2 more cornerbacks this cycle and Smith is one of the first names on the list. Smith’s teammate Daquan Newkirk is already committed to the Tigers and I am sure he will be in his ear all day. A Tiger victory that includes a strong defensive performance might help the staff sell the #4 overall ranked JUCO talent to suit up for the orange and blue next season.

Finally, Auburn has two important offensive line visitors. Trey Hill has been a frequent visitor to the Plains and there seems to be a growing confidence that the big man will pick the Tigers in the near future. Georgia is still a very real threat in this recruitment but I really think the Tigers are in a very good spot right now. Carvin, on the other hand, is a name that hasn’t been mentioned much since the summer. Recently, Carvin has emerged as one of Auburn’s top offensive tackle prospects. Mississippi State is thought to be his leader but if Auburn makes a strong push I would not be surprised to see the Tigers land the talented OL prospect out of Tennessee.

Auburn Commits

Nice to see those three new names on this list. It appears all of Auburn’s commits are expected at the game and there is no doubt they will be in the ears of many of Auburn’s top targets.

The most important name on that list is Quindarious Monday. Due to his high school football team playing on Saturday for most of the season he’s not been able to take many visits during the season. Two week ago, instead of attending the Georgia game he was at Clemson since he promised that coaching staff he would attend a game and that was his last chance. As of now, a lot of confidence remains that he will stick with Auburn but it still makes you worry if a kid hasn’t made it to campus during the season. I expect Monday gets plenty of attention from the coaches today.

2018 Visitors Committed Elsewhere

4* QB Jarren Williams was expected to take an official visit to Auburn this week but cancelled after his Ohio State visit last weekend. It appears he’s all Miami Hurricane right now. That means Auburn is going to turn their full attention to current Ohio State commit Emory Jones. Alabama is thought to be the expected destination if Jones elects to flip but this will be Jones’s second visit in three weeks to the Plains. Auburn could make that race very interesting.

The big name that was added this week was Richard Gouraige. He’s long been one of Auburn’s top offensive tackle targets but the big man wasn’t able to make it up to AU’s campus much this summer and eventually committed to Florida over Clemson. With the recent coaching change in Gainesville, it appears he is checking out all of his options. It’s unclear how good a chance Auburn has at flipping him but it doesn’t hurt to get him on campus.

Walker is back again this week. He is going to be tough to flip from Alabama but Auburn is making this one a fight.

2018 Unofficial Visitors

The main name to pay attention to on this list is Kelvin Joseph. The #9 ranked cornerback was once an LSU commit before backing off his pledge earlier this fall. Since then, Alabama and Florida State have both made a major push though the Bayou Bengals are very much still in the conversation. Now it appears Auburn is making a push. I will just say that I will have to actually see Auburn pull a top 10 CB out of the state of Louisiana before I believe it. But getting him on campus is big and a great visit could put Auburn in the thick of the race.

The other name I wanted to mention is Zakoby McClain. There was a time it looked like he was a sure thing to sign with Auburn but that took a turn over the summer when Auburn struggled to get him to campus. He’s had an odd recruitment so far namely because he never seems to make any visits. If he does make the trip to Auburn, then you might see this recruitment heat back up. Especially if Auburn feels like they can’t flip Quay Walker or gain ground on Channing Tindall. FWIW I personally think McClain is just as talented as those two guys. If Auburn can sign any of these three players to go with Harris and Jibunor, it will be hard to not love this linebacker class.

2019 Unofficial Visitors

That’s a lot of names but that’s really good news for Auburn. Today’s Iron Bowl will more than likely have a bigger affect on next year’s class than this year’s. The 2019 class is also loaded with elite talent in the southeast so getting off to a fast start is crucial. Auburn already has one stud on board in George Pickens but would love to add some more commits in the near future. Keep an eye on Derrian Brown, Ja’Len Sims and Jalen Alexander. All three are guys that are high on Auburn. I don’t think any pop this week but if there were any from this group to do so my money is on it being one of those three.

2020 Unofficial Visitors

As we saw this week, recruiting never starts too early. The Tigers landed their first commitment of the 2020 class in Andy Boykin Tuesday and will welcome quite a few more elite 2020 talent on campus today. Auburn is a big time player for Myles Murphy and although the 2020 signing day is a long ways away, if Auburn can land both Murphy and Boykin that would be a heck of a DL pair for the future. Just something to file away.

War Eagle!