Offensive line recruiting has become a hot topic for Auburn fans. After only signing two prep OL in the 2018 class, Auburn landed three in this past cycle. When asked about the small numbers at his signing day press conference Wednesday, Gus Malzahn stated that he expected a big OL class in 2020 and felt good about where Auburn stood early.
“You will see us probably sign the largest offensive line class we’ve done since I’ve been here with this class, and I think we’re already in a pretty good spot with 2020 going into this class”
Well, he’s off to a strong start. This evening, one of Auburn’s top OL targets in the 2020 class, 4* Avery Jernigan, announced his commitment to the Tigers.
COMMITTED! Excited to join the Auburn Family! WAR EAGLE! pic.twitter.com/3cfxR7JQlZ— avery jernigan (@averyjernigan77) February 8, 2019
Jernigan holds offers from the likes of Florida State, Kentucky, Nebraska and South Carolina. The Gamecocks were thought to be the Tigers’ stiffest competition but Jernigan had been trending AU for awhile. Big to go ahead and get him in this class.
While listed as an offensive tackle, Jernigan’s future is probably in the interior. At 6’3, not sure he has the length to play outside in the SEC. But at 6’3” 278 lbs, he’s got a great frame to add some good weight and bulk up when he gets to the Plains. Jernigan plays in a run heavy scheme where he thrives. I love his ability to fire off the ball and win early at the point of attack. He’s athletic, capable of getting down the field and making key blocks in open space. Jernigan does a great job keeping his feet moving through contact which allows him to consistently finish.
Two commits in two weeks ain’t too bad. Auburn’s 2020 class has suffered some early blows but this is a big win early this cycle. Auburn needs to sign at least five offensive lineman this go around and this is a durn good way to get started. I plan to dive deeper into next year’s offensive line targets in the coming weeks but I would keep an early eye on 4* Chris Mayo, 4* Miller Merriweather-Lewis and 3* Javion Cohen.
The Tigers move up to #12 in the 2020 rankings though it’s WAY too early to worry about that too much. Jernigan gives Auburn three 4* prospects early this cycle. Don’t be surprised if this list grows a bit more in the near future.
War Eagle Avery!