Dillon Lee Drawn To Alabama Football
Dillon Lee, a 6-4, 240-pound inside linebacker, played on a Buford team accustomed to winning championships. But last fall, Buford's streak of four consecutive state championships was broken by Calhoun when Adam Griffith hit a 32-yard field goal in overtime. Griffith ranks as the nation's number one placekicker, and he will be a teammate of Lee at Alabama.
Lee didn't say if he had Griffith on his prospects call list, but said there are no hard feelings towards Griffith. "It's good that he's that good and that he's coming here," said the linebacker. "High school is high school. I'm glad we're on the same team now and he can help me."
Unlike Griffith, who will arrive in Tuscaloosa in the summer, Lee finished high school in December and is an early enrollee at The University.
Lee, who was ranked at the nation's number four inside linebacker prospect, led a Buford defense that allowed just 7.3 points per game his senior season. Lee had 84 tackles with 17 tackles for loss and nine sacks. He also had five interceptions and a fumble recovery.
Bama might have expected to lose Lee to the homestate Georgia Bulldogs, where Dillon's brother, Dallas, is an offensive guard. Dillon selected Alabama over Florida State, Florida, Auburn, and Clemson.
Lee said his message to fellow Georgia prospects regarding the Crimson Tide was that playing at Alabama "is for people who want to come in and compete with the best and play for the best coaches.
"I was drawn here because of how they do things, the emphasis on playing great defense. Me being a defensive player, that really drew me to the program."
Lee was one of six high school players and two junior college transfers who were able to enter Alabama in January for the spring semester. They have been in the off-season program and will be in spring practice, which begins next month.
Lee said he came in early "so I could learn the system, learn what's going on so I wasn't walking in with a bunch of surprises. Coming into a national championship program, I feel like they are pretty strict. Everyone does things a certain way and I just wanted to come in so I'd have a clue what's going on, so I'd get a jump on everything.
"I hope it will make a pretty big difference. It's a really complicated defense, probably the most complicated out there. So as much as I can pick up and learn every day I think will help."
He said he hoped to be able to "contribute on special teams and anywhere else I can" next fall.
Lee's early enrollment gave him an early introduction to the Fourth Quarter program, the off-season strength and conditioning program run by Scott Cochran.
"I'd never cramped in a weight room before, but it happens a lot here," Lee said. He called the workouts "really hard. That's probably been the hardest part, trying to keep up with the pace they demand here. Coach Cochran is really excited about lifting weights. He's really enthusiastic about it. He knows a lot about it, so I just try to do everything he tells me to do."
Lee didn't know he was joining the national championship team when he committed. He watched Alabama's 21-0 win over LSU in the BCS National Championship Game from his home, then drove to Tuscaloosa the next day." He agreed "It's pretty fun to say" that he has joined the national champions.
And though he's given up being in high school for the final semester of his senior year, he said, "I'm having fun here. I think it was for the best."
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