Tuesday, March 19, 2013
Alabama adds safety to 2014 class
By Greg Ostendorf
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- The University of Alabama landed another commitment on Tuesday when 2014 safety Chris Williams (Kingsland, Ga./Camden County) announced his verbal pledge to the Crimson Tide via Twitter.
Chris Williams joined high school teammate Kalvaraz Bessent as an Alabama commit.
First, he had to get his mother’s blessing.
“Me and my mom sat down and talked about, making sure I went to the place that I wanted to go,” Williams said. “The atmosphere is nice, the weight room, the practice facilities, the game field, the coaches, everything. It’s just right.”
It wasn’t too difficult to sell his mother, Cassandra Williams, on Alabama. She grew up in Wetumpka, Ala., and has always pulled for the Tide. Still, she had to make sure that’s where her son really wanted to go and that he wasn’t doing it for her sake.
“I was sitting on the coach, and he came in and said, ‘Mom, I want to commit to Alabama. I said, ‘no you don’t. You just know I like them. That’s why you’re doing it. Don’t do it for me. You have to do it for yourself.’ He was like, ‘Mom, this is what I want to do.’
“It was great for me because I’m an Alabama fan. I’m very proud.”
After he told his mother, Williams reached out to his high school teammate, cornerback Kalvaraz Bessent, who committed to Alabama last week. The two visited Tuscaloosa together last month for the Tide’s junior day.
“Me and him, we’ve got a good relationship,” Bessent said. “We’ve been playing football together since middle school. I’m really excited about it. I think we can do good together, push each other harder and make each other better.”
Bessent says he was the one who ultimately convinced his teammate to pick Alabama. Williams had offers from Auburn, Kentucky, Mississippi State, Ohio State and Ole Miss, but it came down to Alabama and Florida State.
“He was saying Florida State, Florida State, Florida State, but I was telling him Alabama, Alabama,” Bessent said. “I kind of convinced him to go because he’s like a little brother to me. We’re both good athletes, and it will be good for us to go to the same school.”
It was the type of package deal the UA coaching staff was looking for. Secondary was a need for the Tide in 2014, and both players fill that need -- Bessent at cornerback and now the 6-foot-1, 180-pound Williams at safety. The two know how to play off each other.
“If we’re in red, cover 3, that means we’re both going to cover deep, so we have to have each other’s back,” Williams said. “In cover 2, I have to have his back on the deep route.”
“We celebrate a lot,” Bessent said. “I know if I make a mistake, he’s got my back, and I’ve pretty much got his back.”
The two Peach State commitments join ESPN Watch List athlete Bo Scarbrough (Tuscaloosa, Ala./Northridge) in Alabama’s 2014 class. Williams is the first safety to commit to the Tide since Landon Collins in the 2012 class.