6-foot-2, 225-pound linebacker Walker Jones had doulbe-digit offers heading into Monday's suprise commitment.
The Cordova (Tenn.) Evangelical Christian three-star product issued the following statement:
"After much thought and prayer, I have verbally committed to play football at the University of Alabama. Coach Saban told me he is very pleased with my decision and happy to have me as a part of the 2013 class. He said I have the size, athleticism, and intelligence to be a good player at the next level. He plans for me to play inside linebacker but told me I have the versatility to play outside or even h-back. He also told me I will have an opportunity to contribute on special teams.
It was such a difficult decision because of the other great opportunities I had, but overall the best fit for me academically and athletically was at Alabama. Alabama is indisputably one of the best programs in the nation right now, mainly due to what a great coaching staff it has. Coach Saban has won 3 national championships and has a top-notch recruiting class each year. I respect his work ethic and willingness to devote his full effort to turning his players into great men. I have really appreciated the way Coach Groh and Coach Smart have recruited me, showing me that Alabama was the best fit for me while also giving me the time to realize it for myself. I cannot wait to play for Coach Smart as my position coach and play-caller. I have spent a lot of time with him in my 4 years at camp and believe in his ability to make me a part of some great Alabama defenses.
Alabama also fits my academic goals as I plan to major in business, fulfill my pre-med requirements, and then head to med school for my post-graduate work. Alabama possesses highly respected business and medical schools.
I am so thankful to the other schools that have recruited me and respect each of the coaches and programs tremendously. I am very grateful to Coach Dan Mullen for having confidence in my ability and who was the first to offer me a D1 scholarship. Coach Mirando and Coach Collins did an excellent job of recruiting me and it was very difficult to tell them my decision. Mississippi State has an exciting program and I know they have a great future ahead. Coach Franklin, Coach Pry, and Coach Hand all did an amazing job recruiting me at Vanderbilt and I know that Coach Franklin will build a successful program there with the plan he has laid out.
I want to thank my parents for taking me on many different visits that allowed me to realize what I was looking for in a school. These visits helped me to learn about each program and have confidence in making my decision. I'm very grateful that my family never pressured me in any way and allowed me to make the decision on my own. I am very excited about playing with my brother Harrison and continuing our family tradition at Alabama.
I also want to thank Coach Geoff Walters, my high school coach, for assisting me in my recruitment and also teaching me what it meant to work hard to achieve your goals. All of my coaches at ECS have helped me develop both my athletic skills as well as my character, which have both been the reasons for my opportunity to play at the college level. I am excited to have one more year with them to achieve great things on and off the field.
I am thrilled to have this opportunity and I will work as hard as I can to do everything and anything to contribute to the success of Alabama's program. Roll Tide!"
The move is big for the program not only in the wake of Reuben Foster's flip to Auburn, but for the fact that the position void is filled with Jones on the heels of Josh McNeil's pledge. The Crimson Tide now has 18 commits in the Class of 2013 and moves up to No. 7 in the FOX Sports NEXT team rankings.
Premium subscribers can take a look at the newest Crimson Tide pledge during his junior season