It feels like 4* Buck Derick Hall has been on commit watch for months now. That’s because he has... The talented edge prospect out of Gulfport, MS has long had Auburn as his top school and said that a decision could come “soon” only for nothing to change. That allowed Florida, Florida State, Mississippi State and Ole Miss all to make serious pushes for the young man’s services. But in the end, it was all Auburn.
Hall has been at the top of Auburn’s Buck board since the beginning of this cycle. Marcus Woodson and Rodney Garner were both critical in his recruitment but it was Hall’s relationship with Gus Malzahn that proved the difference. Gus reportedly took a much more hands on role in this recruitment and in the end it paid off.
Sadly, there doesn’t appear to be any senior tape out on Hall so we will make due with last season’s tape...
Hall is what an edge prospect is supposed to look like. At 6’4” 216 lbs, Hall has the length, quick twitch and bend that defensive coordinators drool over in pass rushers. He’s a tremendous athlete that a number of teams (like Mississippi State) wanted as a traditional linebacker. For Auburn, he’s Buck all the way.
He will have to improve as a run defender to see meaningful snaps. I think you will see him get Richard Jibunor like reps in 2019 as he gets in the weight room and bulks up even further to play on the edge. He’s got the frame to play at 230-240 lbs without losing his explosiveness. The Tigers need more pass rushers in the program and Hall definitely fits the bill.
This was an important commitment for Auburn for a number of reasons. First, it would have been a bad look to miss out on Hall to start the day after being considered his leader for five months. Especially having lost a commitment from a MS prospect the night before. Second, the Tigers haven’t really pursued a wide range of Buck targets this year. Hall has been the guy and if Auburn whiffed they would have had to settle with just Colby Wooden who isn’t bad by any stretch but looks like someone that might grow into a 5 technique down the line. Finally, Hall is a durn good player and Auburn needs more of those.
With Hall on board, the Tigers are back up to 16 commitments in the class. They also move a spot up in the rankings to #14. Auburn actually is ranked in the top 5 when it comes to average player rating but due to having a lower number of commitments than many of the teams ahead of them in the rankings, they sit just outside the top 10. But Auburn is in a very good position to close strong. If they can land 3* RB DJ Williams later today then it’s been a successful day. Obviously adding someone like 4* OG William Putnam would turn this into a major boom day but that seems unlikely now. Either way, landing Derick Hall is a nice way to starting the early signing period.
War Eagle Derick!