- Kipp Adams, Reporter, RecruitingNation
Reuben Foster (Auburn, Ala./Auburn) has been committed to the University of Alabama for almost a year now. Yet Foster, the nation’s No. 2 prospect, continues to keep the door cracked open. On Saturday, the 6-foot-2, 242-pound linebacker decided he needed to take another trip up to Athens.
“I had not visited UGA in a while, and I am still giving them a chance, so why not visit?” Foster said. “I missed being around the coaches. They are energetic, fun to be around and they speak the truth. My interest in Georgia is up there. I like Georgia; they were one of my first colleges that I visited, and they treat you like family.”
Foster was on campus for four hours during the Mark Richt Camp, and even though the Bulldogs head coach had more than 100 prospects competing in front of him, he still made sure to spend ample time with the five-star target.
“I can talk to Coach Richt about anything,” Foster said. “I was talking to him about my past and he asked if I knew my dad and I said no. I know he really cares about me and about family. He said the key to success is to stay humble and focus on personal growth. He said if I came to Georgia he would help me do that with their mentor program there.”
While walking on the sideline during position drills, Foster ran into Georgia commitment Johnny O’Neal (Dublin, Ga./West Laurens) between reps. Inside linebackers coach Kirk Olivadotti’s face lit up when seeing the pair standing next to each other, saying "that is real pretty right there," hinting at the two playing together at the next level.
“It made me think about playing with Johnny O’Neal, but then I remembered that I was still committed to Alabama,” Foster said.
And that's the problem facing Foster.
“I consider myself a Georgia boy,” Foster said. “I know the UGA commitments better than anyone. Tray Matthews (Newnan, Ga./Newnan) and Shaq Wiggins (Tyrone, Ga./Sandy Creek) are going there. I know guys that have signed there, too, because that is one of the first schools I visited.”
Foster admits that the opportunity to join his friends in Athens is a major appeal to him because he believes it could elevate his game.
“When you are with your friends you play hard because you know they are playing right by your side,” Foster said. “Georgia has most of my friends, and I love them. I know they can put the program on top where Alabama is and I know they will ride or die with me.”
While Matthews was unable to make the trip to Georgia on Saturday, Wiggins made a pitch of his own to Foster.
“I spent time with Shaq Wiggins and he told me about the fab five,” Foster said. “Shaq said that when I commit, Montravius Adams (Vienna, Ga./Dooly) commits and joins him, Tray Matthews and Naim Mustafaa (Alpharetta, Ga./Alpharetta) at Georgia, the fab five would be complete.”
Another factor that could make Foster’ choice more difficult is the impending decision of ESPN 150 running back Alvin Kamara (Norcross, Ga./Norcross). At the Atlanta NFTC back in April, Foster, Kamara and Matthews discussed a potential "package deal" where the trio would play together at the next level.
“If Alvin Kamara commits to Georgia, that would be a big, big, big problem because I have always wanted to play together with him and Tray Matthews,” Foster said. “Georgia would move even further up the list and it would make it even tougher because I still love Alabama. I would love to play with them at the same college so I do not know where that would leave me at.”
Foster believes both programs will offer him and Matthews a chance to play early because of possible departures at linebacker and safety to the NFL.
“I am still trying to talk to Tray about playing with me at Alabama,” Foster said. “I have not given up on him, because he is my boy, and he has not given up on me about joining him at Georgia.”
Foster expects to have a resolution one way or another within the next few months.
“I am trying to figure out how I am going to make my final decision. It might be before my senior season,” Foster said.