Top quarterback attending Bama camp

A standout at last year's NIKE Camp in Tuscaloosa where he finished second overall in the quarterback ratings to Jamarcus Russell, Baldwyn, Mississippi's Blake Barnes is in the recruiting mix for Alabama.

Blake Barnes (6-3, 215, 4.7), attended the NIKE Camp again this year held recently on the Auburn campus. The second time was again the charm for Barnes, as he turned in a dominating performance in the passing drills.

According to recruiting gurus on hand, Barnes showed a cannon for an arm on out routes. He also displayed good touch on roll-out passes and good strength on deep routes. He would have had an even better camp except Barnes had several passes dropped that were on target.

Barnes' latest top five includes Alabama, Auburn, Ole Miss, Mississippi State and Arkansas. "(My father and I) have already visited Alabama several times," Barnes said. "Now that Coach Shula is there, we plan on taking even more trips to get acquainted."

Since taking over the starting quarterback position for Baldwyn High School, Barnes has thrown for 62 touchdowns and helped record 22 wins his two seasons as the starter. As a sophomore he threw for 2,200 yards and 25 touchdowns. Last season Barnes passed for 2,500 yards and 37 touchdowns.

Barnes also plays first base for his high school team but considers football his main sport. The quarterback plans to attend several camps this summer, and Barnes is starting off with Alabama's this weekend.

He maintained his strong interest in the Tide despite the recent coaching turnover. "My familly had hoped Coach (Sparky) Woods would remain with the staff," Barnes said. "We have a standing friendship." Woods, who will coach running backs for Alabama this season, has recruited Barnes for months.

Barnes is an excellent student, who will have no trouble qualifying.

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