Gray gets ‘Bama offer, hears from Thomas

Tony Gray’s rise from seldom talked about underclassmen to left tackle prospect every SEC program has looked into took another turn on Wednesday, when he learned of an offer from Alabama.

“I’m doing great, I’m blessed.”

Tony Gray has been in that mold for some time, but has lived in that mold over the last month or so, in between collecting his initial scholarship offer up to adding No. 8 on Wednesday.

It was then that Alabama jumped in the race for the class of 2017 offensive lineman out of Lawrenceville (Ga.) Central Gwinnett High School. The Knights’ leader in the 2015 class, Adonis Thomas, just signed with the Crimson Tide in February.

“Adonis is a great role model at our school, Adonis told me about Alabama,” Gray said. “He was saying it was a great place to go. I wasn’t too much into Alabama, but after a while, I saw how Nick Saban did his work at the school. It was a big deal when Alabama offered me. It showed me I have something in me…that I can be the best in the next level.

“It was something I never thought I was going to be able to get. It was a great, great feeling when Alabama offered me, you just don’t know.”

Planning a summer visit to Tuscaloosa for what would be his initial experience on campus, Gray admits he’s focusing on his Central Gwinnett teammates at the moment. Last month, he named in-state Georgia as his leader, and has also added recent offers from Florida State, Florida, Kentucky and others.

The emergence began with the simple opportunity every varsity football player works for, playing time.

“I’m still in the weight room, trying to get right with my teammates and trying to get better,” he said. “This year, I had to show people that I had it in me, but next year is big for me. I’ve known I had the potential, but just needed that person to put me in the right place to show what I’ve got.

“Football is my sport; I love this game of football. I love it! I’m just enjoying the ride, I still have two more years. I’m very blessed…so I’m just taking a ride right now.”

Gray added a new goal to his plan of late in helping his teammates earn scholarship offers, something those older than him like Thomas, had done before him.

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