Alabama Crimson Tide: Northwestern Wildcats


The Opening presented by Nike Football will take place July 7-10 at Nike World Headquarters in Oregon, with 162 of the nation's top high school football prospects set to compete. With four days of dynamic training, coaching and competition among the best of the best, The Opening is the perfect chance for recruits in the Class of 2015 to make big jumps and shine on the national stage.

Here are five prospects with the most to gain at the prestigious event:

Getting to know Jauan Jennings 

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Throughout this recruiting cycle, RecruitingNation will profile a number of ESPN 300 prospects in the 2015 class, including an inside look at the prospect, his recruitment, a scouting report and what college program could benefit when he ultimately makes his decision.

HOOVER, Ala. -- When ESPN Junior 300 star Jauan Jennings visited Auburn this past weekend, he had the opportunity to take in the Tigers’ first scrimmage of the spring and watch quarterback Nick Marshall, a player not so different from himself.

Marshall played quarterback in high school but signed with Georgia as a defensive back. After committing a violation of team rules, he was dismissed from the team and ended up in junior college. One positive that came from the incident was that it gave Marshall an opportunity to return to the position he loves, and now he’s one of the top returning signal-callers in the SEC.

“He came from not playing quarterback at first,” Jennings said. “He was a defensive back. He did a lot of things I want to be able to do. A lot of coaches don’t feel I can play quarterback. A lot of fans don’t feel I can play quarterback. I want to say, ‘I told you so.’”


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Alabama, Ohio State or Kentucky will know by Sunday evening if their recruiting classes increase by one.

Wide receiver Derek Kief (Cincinnati/La Salle) confirmed he will announce where he will continue his academic and athletic future on his personal Twitter account on Sunday.


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CINCINNATI -- Derek Kief will have a lot of time to ponder his recruitment next week. He has close to a four-hour drive to Atlanta and then a flight back home to Cincinnati.


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ESPN 150 OT has top eight in mind 

May, 20, 2013
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It was a Thursday night in late April and Alex Bookser (Pittsburgh/Mount Lebanon) was watching the NFL draft. A 6-foot-6, 295-pound prospect, Bookser is being recruited as a lineman on both sides of the ball.

Bookser was an offensive lineman by the end of the night Thursday.

“Ever since I saw the draft I decided to go O-line,” said Bookser, referring to the run on tackles in the first round, including three among the first five picks. “That was the biggest draft I’ve ever seen, so I was like if I can get that far it’ll definitely pay off.”

With more than 20 offers to his name, Bookser was already being recruited mostly as an offensive tackle, where he is ranked No. 14 nationally. As a two-way player for Mount Lebanon, Bookser likes defense a little more because he can play with a little more emotion on the defensive line. He understands why coaches project him best on offense, though.


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Recruiting has steadily picked up for four-star quarterback Brandon Harris (Bossier City, La./Parkway), and that trend continued Monday.


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This past weekend, Garrett Dickerson (Oradell, N.J./Bergen Catholic) sat in on a sleep study at Stanford. Now the Cardinal coaches are hoping Dickerson puts his recruitment to bed.


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Only two days after firing head coach Bill Carmody, Northwestern athletic director Jim Phillips flew to New Jersey on Monday to meet with four-star senior point guard signee Jaren Sina (Lake Hopatcong, N.J./Gill St. Bernard's), one of the best recruits Carmody had been able to land during his 13-year tenure.

As a result of the meeting, Sina is now expected to be released from his letter of intent with Northwestern within the next two days, according to his father and high school coach, Mergin Sina.

[+] EnlargeJaren Sina
John F. Rhodes for ESPN.comUncommitted senior point guard Jaren Sina is one to watch this spring signing period.
“We’re going to get the release because they might bring a guy in that’s not a great fit with Jaren,” Mergin said. “But we love the school.”

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Coveted OLB names a top five 

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ATHENS, Ga. -- Outside linebacker Jacob Pugh (Tallahassee, Fla./Godby) isn’t exactly sure of how many offers he has. The 6-foot-3, 220-pound junior has not counted them. Once he had received over 30 offers to the top programs in the nation, there really seemed no point in doing so. Pugh is more concerned about the five that he has on top.


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Alabama’s courtship of receiver Derek Kief all happened fast, first making contact last week, followed by an offer on Thursday. So what's next for the Cincinnati La Salle receiver?


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A week ago, DeShone Kizer sat down with his parents to discuss his future. The three of them were planning to end the Toledo (Ohio) Central Catholic quarterback’s recruitment.


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Tide leads Way-Too-Early Top 25

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Alabama CheerleadersStreeter Lecka/Getty ImagesAlabama, with three of the past four national titles, is No. 1 in the Way-Too-Early Top 25 for 2013.

There's still seven months before the start of the 2013 season, and the teams and their order figure to change frequently, but it's never too early to take a look at the Way-Too-Early Top 25 for 2013.

And with three national championships in the past four years, there's no reason to change the team that's on top.

Also see:
ESPN 60 point guard Jaren Sina (Lake Hopatcong, N.J./Gill St. Bernard's School) has continued to raise his level of play thanks to his great work ethic and love for the game.

At 6-foot-1 and 185 pounds, Sina is a very skilled, smart and confident player who competes on every possession. He is also an excellent facilitator and shooter with range past the arc.

[+] EnlargeJaren Sina
Courtesy of Nike EYBLFour-star PG Jaren Sina committed to Seton Hall.
"I am a leader on the court, I can get teammates involved, create for myself and make open shots. I have been working on improving my speed and quickness and people have been telling me that they can see the improvement when they watch me play," he said. "I work out four days a week at 5:30 a.m. lifting weights and after school I work on my agility, ballhandling and shooting."

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