'Bama didn't even know who I was:' Alabama football lands 2022 juco TE on trip to see teammate
Alabama football made a late spring addition to its class of 2022. Miles Kitselman of Hutchinson Community College in Kansas committed to the Crimson Tide and will enroll in June, Hutchinson coach Drew Dallas confirmed to the Tuscaloosa News.
Kitselman, 6-foot-6, 250 pounds, is Alabama's fourth tight end commit, joining early enrollee Elijah Brown, Amari Niblack and Danny Lewis. He brings the class' size to 26.
Kitselman said Alabama and Tennessee were on Hutchinson's campus last week to see teammate and junior college All-American wide receiver Malik Benson, a 2023 prospect who has Alabama in his top 11.
Louisiana was the only school to offer Kitselman before Alabama, Kitselman said.
"Bama didn't even know who I was," Kitselman told the Tuscaloosa News. "I was working with the wide receivers in pre-practice, and then all of a sudden they were like, 'Hey, who's this No. 87? Is he a big wide receiver or is he a tight end working with wide receivers?'
"Just went from there. Luckily Alabama needed a tight end. A lot of the situations (with colleges recruiting my position) it doesn't even matter how good you are. If a team is set on tight ends they're not even going to look at you. Lord willing, Alabama needed a tight end, I was available and they chose me, so I just committed on the spot."
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Kitselman had an unofficial visit planned with Tennessee in June and was in talks with Florida State, Iowa State and Kansas State.
"Other than that, nobody else pulled the trigger," Kitselman said. "I guess (coach Nick) Saban saw something in me that those other guys didn't, so I'm definitely not going to disappoint (him)."
Kitselman played left tackle and defensive end at Lyndon High in Kansas, where he had 99 tackles and 10 for loss as a senior. Kitselman said he had a partial scholarship to Division II Emporia State when he graduated in 2021.
But he believed he could play tight end and went the junior college to develop on offense instead.
"All the glory to (Benson)," Kitselman said. "If it wasn't for him, Alabama would've never been at that practice. Without Malik I would've never been in this situation right now."
Jerell Rushin is a recruiting reporter for the Tuscaloosa News and the USA TODAY Network. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter at @JerellRushin_.