The University of Alabama signed three players Wednesday or, as Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban called it at his afternoon press conference, “the Limited Edition Signing Day.”
“I don’t know which of these guys will turn out to be the guys that develop quickly and can contribute to our team next year, but we’re certainly going to give everyone an opportunity and help these guys develop the best we can,” Saban said.
The three additions for Alabama were prep teammates Jamil Burroughs, a defensive lineman, and wide receiver Javon Baker of Powder Springs, Georgia, McEachern High School, and 340-pound offensive lineman Damieon George of North Shore High School in Houston.
Saban said Alabama addressed its “main needs” in December by signing the No. 1 prep quarterback prospect, Bryce Young (already on campus), and adding three defensive linemen.
“I think quarterback is always a big thing,” Saban said. “Bryce is a very talented guy and we hope we can bring him along, as well as the others.”
Saban said the defensive front seven was also a priority and addressed a “lack of depth” on the defensive line in 2019.
“I think we had five guys that were freshmen last year, three of those guys played a significant amount, and we feel like the other guys have an opportunity to develop into being players,” Saban said. “I thought the three players we got at that position this year (Burroughs, Tim Smith and Pickens County standout Jah-Marien Latham) are certainly good players. I feel like in the last two years we’ve added good, young talent at that position.”
Alabama’s primary uncommitted target between the two signing periods was McKinnley Jackson, a four-star defensive lineman who signed Wednesday morning with Texas A&M.
Jackson, from George County High School in Lucedale, Mississippi, took an official visit to College Station last weekend. Saban, defensive coordinator Pete Golding and defensive line coach Freddie Roach — who has yet to be officially announced by UA — visited the Jackson family in Lucedale last week, as did LSU head coach Ed Orgeron and several members of the Tiger staff.
Jayson Jones, a defensive lineman from Calera, announced he had signed with Oregon. He had previously committed to Alabama but elected to continue visiting other schools and was not expected to sign with UA.
Ennis Rakestraw, a cornerback from Texas who visited the UA campus last month, signed with Missouri on Wednesday.
UA has already added to its class between the signing dates, securing grad transfer tight end Carl Tucker from North Carolina. Saban was asked about Tucker but said he could not comment on graduate transfers until they were enrolled at UA.
If UA does add an additional player , it may have to rely on the transfer portal again to even out its scholarship numbers. It has already lost two scholarship players to the transfer portal: running back Jerome Ford, now at Cincinnati, and offensive tackle Scott Lashley, now at Mississippi State.
The Crimson Tide also got a preferred walk-on punter in Sam Johnson of Oak Mountain High School in Birmingham.
The Alabama recruiting class was ranked No. 2 nationally by the 247 Sports Composite and No. 3 by both Rivals.com and ESPN.
Reach Cecil Hurt at email@example.com or via Twitter, @Cecil Hurt. Tuscaloosa News sports writer Brett Hudson contributed to this report.
ALABAMA 2020 SIGNING CLASS
Name, Pos., Ht., Wt., Hometown/Previous School
William Anderson, Jr., LB, 6-4, 230, Hampton, Ga./Dutchtown
Javon Baker, WR, 6-2, 195, Powder Springs, Ga./McEachern
Brian Branch, DB, 6-0 ,185, Tyrone, Ga./Sandy Creek
Chris Braswell, LB, 6-3, 220, Baltimore, Md./St. Frances Academy
Jackson Bratton, LB, 6-3, 233, Muscle Shoals, Ala./Muscle Shoals
Jamil Burroughs, DL 6-3, 321, Powder Springs, Ga./McEachern
Caden Clark, TE, 6-4, 258, Akron, Ohio/Archbishop Hoban
Javion Cohen, OL, 6-4, 296, Phenix City, Ala./Central
Kyle Edwards, RB, 6-0, 205, Destrehan, La./Destrehan
Damieon George, OL, 6-6, 345, Houston, Texas/North Shore
Traeshon Holden, WR, 6-3, 196, Harbor City, Calif./Narbonne
Thaiu Jones-Bell, WR, 6-0, 190, Hallandale, Fla./Miami Carol City
Demouy Kennedy, LB, 6-3, 215, Theodore, Ala./Theodore
Jah-Marien Latham, DL, 6-3, 297, Reform, Ala./Pickens County
Jase McClellan, RB, 5-11, 200, Aledo, Texas/Aledo
Seth McLaughlin, OL, 6-4, 278, Buford, Ga./Buford
Malachi Moore, DB, 6-0, 180, Trussville, Ala./Hewitt-Trussville
Jahquez Robinson, DB, 6-2, 185, Jacksonville, Fla./Sandalwood
Quandarrius Robinson, LB, 6-5, 220, Birmingham, Ala./Jackson-Olin
Drew Sanders, LB, 6-5, 230, Denton, Texas/Ryan
Timothy Smith, DL, 6-4, 325, Sebastian, Fla./Sebastian River
Kristian Story, DB, 6-1, 213, Lanett, Ala./Lanett
Ronald Williams Jr., DB, 6-2, 188, Ferriday, La./Hutchinson C.C./Ferriday
Roydell Williams, RB, 5-10, 207, Hueytown, Ala./Hueytown
Bryce Young, QB, 6-0, 190, Santa Ana, Calif./Mater Dei