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Friday, November 1, 2013
ESPN 300 duo postpones Alabama trip

By Brad Bournival

CLEVELAND -- Alabama will get its official visits from two huge ESPN 300 targets from Cleveland Glenville. It just won’t happen next week.

Athlete Marshon Lattimore, who is ranked 50th overall, was supposed to head to Tuscaloosa along with safety Erick Smith, who is ranked 228th, next weekend for the Crimson Tide’s game against LSU. That has changed, as the two have said they’ll be on campus in December instead.

For Alabama, it was a matter of having way too many big names on campus on one weekend and the Crimson Tide wanting to give as much attention to the two -- along with Ohio State commit Marcelys Jones -- when they come to town.

It should be noted that Jones has said multiple times he’s very much a Buckeyes’ pledge and goes on visits to help his current teammates in the process.

Instead, the Glenville trio is scheduled to take their official visit to Alabama the weekend of Dec. 13 according to Lattimore and Smith. That’s interesting in that the month-long dead period for senior recruits begins Dec. 16.

That means that there are no official visits allowed during that time and coaches can't have in-person meetings with recruits. It also has eliminated one official visit weekend in the process.

“They said there would be too many people at the LSU game and they wanted some quality time with us,” Lattimore said. “Instead of having 1,000 recruits there, it’s just a few people. It’ll be way better.”

The fight for Lattimore is expected to heat up as he’s taken unofficial visits to Michigan for the Notre Dame game and Ohio State for the Wisconsin tilt.

Many believe the Buckeyes are the leader for both the Tarblooders standouts. But many other schools are involved for the 6-foot, 178-pound Lattimore, who plans on taking all five official visits.

He’s eyeing possible trips to Louisville, Michigan, Ohio State, Oregon and USC, though one of those would have to be an unofficial visit.

The fact Alabama coach Bobby Williams was in attendance for Friday’s 49-24 win over Cleveland John Hay showed just how strong the Crimson Tide’s interest in the Glenville standouts is.

“It’s amazing to see him come all this way just to see me, Erick and Marcelys play,” Latimore said. “That was nice.”

The 6-1, 185-pound Smith is more of a wild card, with Georgia Tech, Kentucky, Louisville, Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State in the mix.

Like Lattimore, he’s seen the Wolverines and Buckeyes in action and has been on Ohio State’s campus plenty of times, so a one-on-one with Nick Saban and Co. is a welcomed change of pace for Smith, who plans on taking all five official visits as well.

“At the game [visits] we watch the game and leave,” Smith said. “Now that we’re going Dec. 13-15, we have more time to develop relationships and spend time with the coaches. I know when this is gone, I’m going to miss it.”