REFORM — Jah-Marien Latham is getting to know his future teammates pretty well.
The Pickens County High School defensive tackle and University of Alabama commitment makes the 25-mile trip from Reform to Tuscaloosa as often as he can.
“I’ve visited about eight times already,” Latham said. “Sometimes I just go and visit and chill with the players.”
Latham, 6-foot-3, 280 pounds, is a four-star player ranked as the 12th best player in the state, according to 247sports.com. He’s also the 24th-ranked defensive tackle in the country.
“I might take a couple of more visits, but I’m pretty locked in,” he said of his decision to sign with Alabama. “I don’t have anything set up right now. My official visit (to Alabama) will be in December.”
Latham, a Crimson Tide commitment since November of 2018, is scheduled to graduate in December and said he plans to enroll at UA in January to get a jumpstart on learning the Crimson Tide’s system.
If Latham does have questions about football life in Tuscaloosa, he doesn’t have to look far for the answers. His head coach, Michael Williams, is a former Alabama tight end (2009-12) who also spent time in the NFL (2013-17).
“It’s no secret that with (Latham) we follow his lead,” Williams said. “He does whatever it takes to get the job done. I know he will build up the guys around him. They see what he does on a daily basis and try to mimic what he does.”
For now, he is focused on his final year of high school.
“This is my last year playing high school football, so I want to try and enjoy every minute of it,” Latham said. “The main thing I want to do is just get a ring. Practice is going good. We’ve got some high intensity and everybody is ballin’ out.”
Latham was named the Alabama Sports Writers Association Lineman of the Year in 2018, finishing with 75 tackles, including 16 for a loss and five sacks.
“This year I want to get more sacks,” he said. “This year I want to try to get like 10 to 15. I want to set a high standard for myself.”