Last week, Auburn’s 2021 class suffered a major blow when long time Auburn commit 3-star OT Caleb Johnson flipped to Notre Dame. Today, the 2021 class gets a major boost snagging the pledge of former Harvard All-Ivy League offensive guard Eric Wilson.
2020 has been full of surprises. After graduating in May, I will be moving to Auburn, AL as a grad student and to play football for the Auburn Tigers. Thanks so much to my teammates, friends, and coaches at Harvard who have made these four years unforgettable. #10000men #WarDamn pic.twitter.com/tlN5VRyrua— Eric Wilson (@ejwilson38) November 24, 2020
Wilson paid his own way to watch the Tigers defeat Tennessee this past weekend. He reportedly left the Plains a silent pledge before going public with his decision this morning. He chose the Tigers over Florida State, LSU, Minnesota and plenty others.
Auburn’s offensive line has been a work in progress this fall. To start the season, Jack Bicknell was rotating lineman most every series in an attempt to find the right five. In recent weeks, he’s rotated out of necessity due to an onslaught of injuries. Depth more than ever matters.
That’s exactly why Auburn is on the hunt for lineman who can make an immediate impact next fall. I’ve written plenty on Auburn’s struggles landing, signing and developing blue chip prep offensive line talent under Gus Malzahn. It’s been incredibly frustrating. But for all his struggles with prep recruits, he’s done extremely well identifying impact offensive lineman in the transfer market. Austin Golson, Darius James, Casey Dunn, Jack Driscoll and Brandon Council were all transfer signees that developed into SEC caliber lineman and helped the Tigers plug some important holes in their prep recruiting. Wilson has a very good chance at continuing that trend.
Wilson had a breakout junior campaign earning 2nd Team All-Ivy honors as the Crimson’s starting left guard. He’s a big man at 6’4” 315 lbs with great mobility. He excels as a puller, showing athleticism necessary to get outside and open up lanes for running backs. I also love Wilson’s work as a combo blocker on zone concepts, consistently working to the 2nd level, something that has been a struggle in recent seasons for Auburn’s offensive line.
Worst case scenario, Auburn brought in a one year rental who can step in if there are any major interior OL injuries. Best case, you are looking at Auburn’s starting left guard or center for 2021. I think there’s a very good chance the latter is more likely.
I also don’t think Auburn is done landing talent from the portal especially on the offensive line. The Tigers are hoping to add an offensive tackle as well this off-season to add even more competition to the OL room next season.
If you can’t sign the flashy 5-stars then you better go get the best transfer talent on the market. You would be hard pressed to find many available interior OL players better than Wilson this off-season.
War Eagle Eric!