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Monday, August 5, 2013
The Early Offer: Watch out for Auburn

By Jeremy Crabtree

The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's latest feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today's offerings: Auburn's latest splash, the countdown to Da'Shawn Hand's announcement and Alabama talks money.

No taming the Tigers
Most of the attention in the SEC has rightfully been focused on the efforts by coaches at Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia, LSU and Texas A&M. All five classes rank in the top 10 in the RecruitingNation class rankings. But one SEC coach over the weekend predicted that the team everybody needs to keep an eye on is Auburn. “Landing Racean Thomas was monster,” the assistant said. “His pledge will cause some ripple effects with some of their other targets. I’m convinced if they show some signs of success on the field this season, then it’s going to be tough to beat those guys off of it. They’ve assembled one of the best recruiting staffs in the country, and Thomas was just a sign of what’s to come. I think they’re going to pull off some other surprises that are going to leave people asking, 'What just happened?' before signing day.”

Wolverines in the hunt for Hand
We know when the nation’s No. 4 player will come off the board. Da'Shawn Hand, the 6-foot-4, 262-pound five-star defensive end from Woodbridge (Va.) High, said on Sunday he would announce his commitment on Nov. 14. Hand's former coach, John Harris, told RecruitingNation’s Tom VanHaaren that Hand plans to take an official visit to Michigan on Sept. 7 and then follow that up with visits to Alabama and Florida before his announcement. LSU and USC are still working to secure a visit from Hand, and if there’s time for a trip to Baton Rouge or Los Angeles, the Trojans and Tigers might get a visit. Might is the key word. Most observers, including RecruitingNation’s Hot Board, have him projected to pledge to the Wolverines. It certainly can’t hurt that Michigan is hotter than any team in the nation after commitments from 2015 studs George Campbell (Tarpon Springs, Fla./East Lake) and Damien Harris (Berea, Ky./Madison Southern), but never underestimate the power of an official visit during the season to Tuscaloosa or Gainesville.

Alabama talks money
Social media is the new frontier for recruiting, and Alabama drew a lot of attention -- and retweets from recruits -- over the weekend when receivers coach Billy Napier shared a picture that highlighted how much money all nine of Alabama’s 2013 NFL draft class signed for. The tweet had $51,810,000 in large silver letters over a series of checks from NFL teams that included how much the players signed for. It’s Nick Saban, the king of recruiting now, putting it in very simple terms for recruits.

51,810,000.00 $$$ pic.twitter.com/4683RRNMTk

— Billy Napier (@coach_bnapier) August 4, 2013