Monday, June 10, 2013
Camp notebook: Auburn fit for Queen
By Greg Ostendorf
AUBURN, Ala. -- It was a busy week for 2015 quarterback Tyler Queen (Kennesaw, Ga./North Cobb), who probably feels as if his arm is ready to fall off. In five days, he camped at Alabama, Auburn and Georgia where he threw for the coaches at all three schools.
“Nah, I’m still good,” he said. “It was very busy, a lot running around, but it was totally worth it because some good things came out of it.”
Some good things certainly came out of it. Queen received offers from Alabama and Clemson last week, but the best news came Sunday when he earned an offer from Auburn and head coach Gus Malzahn after the Tigers’ camp.
“They told me I had to come meet Coach Malzahn and throw a little bit in front of him, and if he liked me or not would that would be whether I got the offer or not,” Queen said. “I knew I had to come in and earn it. It wasn’t just given to me. I knew I had I come in and throw well, and obviously they liked me enough to offer me.
“It was very exciting and very humbling at the same time because they’re a great university and they have a lot of success here. It’s just a blessing to have an offer from them.”
Although Queen was thrilled to receive the Auburn offer, he was just as surprised and just as happy when the Crimson Tide extended an offer last Wednesday. If nothing else, an Alabama offer can lead to more recognition.
“I was very excited because they were the national champions last year,” he said. “ That’s obviously a big deal. When they offer you, you know that something good is going to happen out of that. Other doors are going to open, not just that one. It was a good feeling.”
Still, there’s one team at the top of his list -- the Auburn Tigers.
“Coach Malzahn is a real down-to-earth guy, Coach [Rhett] Lashlee, they’re all great people,” Queen said. “The vibe coming from Auburn is just a very positive one, and I really like what they’re doing up here. I hope I can potentially be one of the guys that joins that.”
When 2015 offensive lineman Tyler Carr (Gadsden, Ala./Southside) attended Auburn’s camp Sunday, he had one goal in mind -- earn a scholarship offer from the Tigers. Afterward, head coach Gus Malzahn made that happen by extending an offer to the in-state prospect.
“It’s huge,” Carr said. “I’ve always been a little kid coming to watch the games. Auburn kind of always inspired me to want to play football when I was growing up, so this is a big deal.
“Coach [J.B.] Grimes had already told me that they were looking at me hard and that he was already ready to pull the trigger. He was just waiting on Coach Malzahn to give the OK. I felt like it was going to be a good day. I just took advantage of it.”
The offer is No. 2 for Carr, who received an offer from Vanderbilt in March. He says he’s also receiving interest from Alabama, Florida State, Ole Miss and Tennessee.
“Auburn’s been great and everything, but I kind of want to see what’s out there,” Carr said. “I’ve always tried to keep an open mind, and I’ve always wanted to see the world. I want to see what else is out there for me.”
The 6-foot-6, 304-pound offensive lineman plans to sit down, look at his recruitment and reevaluate everything after his junior season. This weekend, he’s scheduled to visit Tuscaloosa and compete in Alabama’s OL/DL camp.
One of the more prominent visitors in Auburn on Sunday was 2015 defensive end and Alabama commitment Mekhi Brown (Columbus, Ga./Carver). He hung out on campus while some of his teammates competed in the Tigers’ camp.
“It was a pretty good day,” Brown said. “I hung with my old teammate Gabe Wright. It was pretty cool hanging with him. I talked to Gus Malzahn, too. He just basically told me how he is.
“They all know I’m committed to Alabama. They told me they’re not going to force anything on me. They’re not going to push me too hard.”
It was Brown’s first time meeting Malzahn and the majority of the new staff at Auburn. Although he enjoyed his trip to The Plains, the 6-foot-5, 218-pound junior said nothing changed with his commitment to the Tide.
“I’m 100 percent,” Brown said. “You can’t go wrong with it. I’m not going to change my mind. I really don’t see it.”
The group from Carver High School will continue their camp tour this week with stops at Clemson, Mississippi State, North Carolina and Tennessee. Brown plans to make all four stops but doesn’t know if he’ll work out yet.