Alabama No. 1 on list

This out-of-state defensive end has the University of Alabama at the top of his list. Head Coach Nick Saban has offered a scholarship to go along with 15 other schools on the offer sheet. Andrew Bone talked with the elite prospect.

"I talked to coach Saban on the phone," Jonathan Allen said from Ashburn-Stone Bridge, Va. "Talk about starstruck. I grew up a fan of Nick Saban. He actually is the one who offered me. It was an honor. I was very excited and surprised at the same time.

"Coach Saban talked about the academics. He said 36 football players were on the Academic Honor Roll. He talked about what they expect from me. They are recruiting me as a defensive end.

"I have been keeping in contact with coach Lance Thompson. He is my recruiter. He tells me to make sure I make the right choice for my decision. You have to look at all aspects and find the one that will fit you perfectly.

Allen made it no secret who heads his list of schools.

"Alabama is definitely my No. 1 school," he said. "I grew up an Alabama fan. I was born in Anniston. I moved when I was six months old. It still counts though. We moved a lot because my dad is in the military.

"I have never visited the Alabama campus. In two weeks I plan on either visiting Alabama or Florida. I am leaning towards visiting Alabama though. I will have to check with my dad on the schedule."

The Tide sure has Allen's attention, and he shared what stands out about the program.

"I love the intensity they play with especially in the SEC," he said. "Every game is a big test. It's always going to be a rough game. That's the type of football I like."

Allen reports 16 scholarship offers with recent ones coming from Alabama, Florida and Virginia Tech. He plans to make his college decision before next season.

"Right behind Alabama I like Penn State, Oklahoma, Michigan, N.C. State and Florida," Allen said. "They are all my No. 2 school because it's really close. Alabama is at the top. Then it's those schools.

"I actually visited Penn State this past weekend. I enjoyed the campus. It's really nice. I like coach Larry Johnson. I have a good relationship with him. I like the direction the coaches are trying to take the program."

The 6-foot-3, 225-pound prospect talked about areas for improvement and overall strengths.

"I am probably trying to increase my strength and maintain speed and agility," Allen said. "I feel like my quickness and explosion of the ball are my biggest strengths."

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