Tuscaloosa, Ala., Northridge High School wide receiver James Cox has seen his stock take off this spring with new offers from Arkansas, Southern Miss and Vanderbilt, but he’s hoping for one offer in particular from the school down the road: the University of Alabama.
Next week, Cox has a chance to earn that offer with his performance at the Crimson Tide’s first camp of the summer. The 2013 prospect talked to UA head coach Nick Saban and offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier on Tuesday about the upcoming camp.
“It went real well,” Cox said. “They just told me every time they have seen me, I’ve gotten better. They came to the spring game. Coach Nuss just told me to keep working hard, and they really want to see me in camp. Hopefully, I go over there, and I do my thing.
“I’m real excited. I’ve been preparing for this for awhile. I’m just ready to go over there and show them what I’ve got.”
Cox’s teammate at Northridge, 2014 running back Bo Scarbrough, already has an offer from Alabama and a number of other top schools, but Nussmeier assured Cox that for some guys, it’s a longer process.
“He said some guys are just ready, so they offer early, like with Bo,” Cox said. “Bo got an early offer because he’s just ready. Some guys during the process, they just take time.”
This spring, Cox has been working specifically on becoming more physical as a wide receiver. The 6-foot, 191-pound prospect has gone from being more shifty and trying to make his man miss to using his hands more to bump the defender at the line and go get the ball.
“[Nussmeier] likes that I’m not afraid to be physical,” Cox said. “We talked about playing the slot at Alabama, so he likes that about me because those linebackers are going to try and nudge you off your route. He really likes my hands and my route-running. He compares me a lot to Darius Hanks.”
What does Cox think about playing the slot receiver position at the next level?
“I ain’t scared to go across the middle. You’ve got to be a man to play slot,” he said.
The three new offers this spring give Cox a total of five, and he believes another one may be on the way after he visits Ole Miss for their camp this month. Also, Clemson has expressed interest in seeing Scarbrough and him to attend their camp.
Right now, Cox has Mississippi State as his leader with Vanderbilt and Arkansas close behind, but depending on how he performs at Alabama’s camp next week, that list could change with an offer from the Tide.
He plans to make a decision by the end of the summer.