NCF On The Trail: Dee Liner

Top SEC recruiting rivalries 

October, 1, 2013

From year-to-year the Southeastern Conference is full of recruiting battles. This year it appears that Alabama and LSU could have some of the best recruiting battles we've seen in a while. Here's a closer look at the five top recruiting rivalries in the SEC.

#AskLoogs: Social media fallout

August, 2, 2013
Want to ask ESPN RecruitingNation senior analyst Tom Luginbill a question about your team? Tweet it to @TomLuginbill using the hashtag #AskLoogs.

I chose this question not to pick on Dee Liner, the Alabama freshman who made headlines earlier this week for posting a picture of himself posing with money. This is a prime example of how the choices prospects make in recruiting and in college -- particularly on the Internet -- can make or break the prospect and damage the image of the program. It has nothing to do with talent. Dee Liner is a very, very talented prospect, but as you hear us say all the time if a premier guy does not pan out, rarely is it due to a lack of physical ability. It is usually related to conduct and in Liner’s case, a lack of maturity.

Is Michael Dyer no longer at Auburn because he wasn’t a good enough player? Nope. Is Isaiah Crowell no longer at Georgia because he wasn’t a good enough player? Nope. Time will tell how Liner handles this blip on the radar, but you can rest assured Saban is on top of it. College coaching staffs often devote a staff person to monitor the Twitter accounts and Facebook pages of prospects they are pursuing and the players on the roster. Countless prospects have been dropped by a program during the recruiting process because of something they've posted online. Will this recent photo of Liner damage the Alabama program? Likely not. But it was an unnecessary distraction that easily could have been avoided by education and awareness. As insignificant as pressing send might seem, the ramifications and consequences can be huge. Just ask Johnny Manziel and Texas A&M.

Florida checks in on Tide commitment 

April, 29, 2013
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- ESPN 150 athlete Bo Scarbrough (Tuscaloosa, Ala./Northridge) committed to Alabama in September, but that hasn’t stopped other schools from recruiting him. Last week, Florida running backs coach Brian White paid him a visit.

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Mike Groh helps Tide land No. 1 class 

February, 7, 2013
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- When the ink dried Wednesday night, the University of Alabama came away with the No. 1 recruiting class for the second year in a row. Coach Nick Saban garners most of the attention, but the job done by his staff should not go unnoticed.

Defensive coordinator Kirby Smart deserves credit for staying with Reuben Foster. The ESPN 150 linebacker initially committed to Alabama and then flipped to Auburn. But in the end, he signed with the Crimson Tide. Smart never gave up on him.

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ESPN 150 DT Dee Liner signs with Tide 

February, 6, 2013

MUSCLE SHOALS, Ala. -- ESPN 150 defensive tackle Dee Liner said he has known his decision for a month now, but he made it official on Wednesday. Liner, a former Auburn commitment, announced that he would sign with the University of Alabama.

“It feels real good to get all this stuff off my shoulders,” he said. “Alabama, it’s a real great school. They keep on winning championships. They develop their players into a man on and off the field. That’s why I chose them.”

Liner originally committed to Auburn as a sophomore, but when former head coach Gene Chizik and his staff were let go, the Alabama native decided to explore his options. Top SEC programs like Georgia and LSU made a late push, but in the end, Liner chose the Crimson Tide.

The 6-foot-3, 275-pound prospect is expected to start out as a defensive end, but he said the staff hasn’t ruled out the possibility of playing the Jack linebacker in Alabama’s defense.

What is the impact of Liner's decision?

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Defensive tackle Jay-nard Bostwick (Port Saint Lucie, Fla./Centennial) joined Florida's No. 1-ranked recruiting class on Wednesday morning, making the announcement in a ceremony at his high school. Bostwick picked the Gators over Alabama and Miami.

He is the 27th-ranked player nationally at his position and 286th in the ESPN 300.

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NSD TV announcement schedule

January, 31, 2013
National signing day is just around the corner on Feb. 6. That day, a number of the nation’s top football recruits will announce their college destinations and 18 ESPN 300 prospects are scheduled to do so on ESPNU.

Below is the full schedule of announcements on ESPNU, which kicks off with the nation’s No. 1 overall prospect, Robert Nkemdiche, making his long-awaited decision at 7:30 a.m. ET.

Note: All times are Eastern

Signing day primer: Alabama 

January, 23, 2013
A little behind on the recruiting trail? Worry not -- TideNation has you covered. To catch you up on where the Alabama recruiting class of 2013 stands, we'll take you through the high points, including how the coaching staff has addressed certain needs and set the team up for seasons to come.

Team needs: With three of five starting offensive linemen and two of three defensive lineman starters off to the NFL draft, Alabama was forced to focus on finding help in the trenches. Nick Saban and the rest of the UA coaching staff had success filling those needs with the 2013 class, particularly along the offensive line. The Crimson Tide secured the commitments of four offensive linemen, one coming by way of a junior college in New York. Leon Brown, who was ranked in the top 20 of all junior college prospects by ESPN, could find himself competing for the starting right tackle job vacated by D.J. Fluker.

Derrick Henry
Derek Tyson/ESPN.comDerrick Henry is the only five-star commitment Alabama has and can fit at a variety of position.
Help is on the way: Outside of the lines, Alabama was once again in search of talented athletes to continue bringing potency to an offense that's been on a steady rise the past few years. Amari Cooper and T.J. Yeldon were difference makers in 2012 and there could be one or two who do the same this year. Derrick Henry, the No. 1 athlete in the country and Alabama's lone five-star commitment, could be the biggest wild card of the class. At 6-foot-3 and 243 pounds, he's an option at tailback, H-back and possibly linebacker. He'll begin at running back, where he set a national career rushing yards record at Yulee High in Florida.

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DB Cook enjoys official visit to Bama 

January, 15, 2013
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Over the weekend, in-state cornerback Jonathan Cook made his first trip to the University of Alabama since he committed to the Crimson Tide last month. It was Cook’s official visit, and he already can’t wait to get back to Tuscaloosa.

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ESPN JC 100 DT Bradley picks Auburn 

January, 7, 2013
Nobody is happier to be done with his decision more than junior college defensive tackle Ben Bradley (Hutchinson, Kan./Hutchinson CC).

Bradley ended a month worth of drama by announcing his commitment to Auburn via Twitter on Monday afternoon.

Bradley, who is 6-foot-3 and 310 pounds, picked the Tigers over Kentucky, Nebraska and Missouri. He is ranked No. 44 in the ESPN JC 100.

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Gamecocks make push for CB Wiggins 

January, 3, 2013
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- ESPN 150 cornerback Shaq Wiggins (Tyrone, Ga./Sandy Creek) has been committed to the University of Georgia for more than 10 months, but when asked this week at Under Armour All-America Game practice about his future, Wiggins did not sound so certain about his plans.

“I am still committed to UGA, but there is a very good chance that if I don’t go to Georgia, that I go to South Carolina,” Wiggins said. “After that it is Ole Miss, then Florida, then Texas A&M.”

The Gamecocks have emerged as a true threat to steal Wiggins, the No. 5 cornerback prospect in the country, from the Bulldogs.

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#UAGame practice: Day 4 notebook 

January, 3, 2013

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- With just a player walk-through Thursday, things were relatively easy in Day 4 of practice at Disney's ESPN Wide World of Sports. A four-star defensive tackle gave further explanation about his decision to decommit from an SEC school, several players talked about who impressed them the most, and an ESPN 150 safety changed his decision date.

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Will LB Foster decide by NSD? 

January, 1, 2013
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Four-star Auburn commitment Dee Liner (Muscle Shoals, Ala./Muscle Shoals) and four-star linebacker Reuben Foster (Auburn, Ala./Auburn) had agreed to refrain from doing any interviews involving their recruitment.

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Four-star DL Liner keeps options open 

January, 1, 2013
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Four-star Dee Liner (Muscle Shoals, Ala./Muscle Shoals), an Auburn commitment, has been hesitant to give any recruiting updates since former Tigers coach Gene Chizik was let go and replaced with Gus Malzahn. But the 6-foot-3, 270-pound defensive lineman talked about his status after Day 2 of practice for the Under Armour All-America Game today at Disney’s ESPN Wide World of Sports.

[+] EnlargeDee Liner
Miller Safrit/ESPN.comFive-star DL Dee Liner says while he is eager to meet with Gus Malzahn, he still is solid to Auburn.
“I am committed to Auburn, but I am keeping my options open right now since they got the new coaching staff,” Liner said. “I am getting to know them better, but I have not made an official visit there and that will really factor in when I take that trip.”

Other than Auburn, Liner said that he is also considering Alabama, Miami and LSU, although he is unsure whether any other schools are in the mix at the moment.

“I will most likely take officials to those four schools, but I am not sure if I will take a fifth yet or who it would be to,” Liner said.

As of right now his next official visit will be to check out the Hurricanes.

“I am taking an official to Miami Jan. 11, although I have not finalized the visit just yet,” Liner said. “I want to see how it is down there and get to know the coaches. Who would not want to visit Miami?”

Another school the No. 12 prospect in the country is hoping to see in person is LSU.

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#BlueChipBattles: Dec. 21

December, 21, 2012
Dee Liner, Reuben Foster, Tray MatthewsESPN.comReuben Foster (center) is torn between good friends Dee Liner (left) and Tray Matthews (right).

No. 1 ILB Reuben Foster has voiced his desire to play with at least one of his SEC-bound friends next season. But will he follow Tray Matthews to Georgia or hook up with Dee Liner wherever the ESPN 150 DL settles? It remains to be seen, but the mystery surrounding his recruitment keeps Foster at the top of our #BlueChipBattles.

Each week, RecruitingNation summons its writers from around the country to compile a list of the top 10 battles for elite football recruits leading up to February's signing day.

Here are this week's top battles Insider, and you can take a shot at ranking the top 10 recruiting battles on SportsNation.