Most prospects, especially those of the blue chip variety, hear from colleges curious to learn more about their game on the field, personality off of it, academic standing and more.
Some, though, take matter into their own hands. This was the case with B.J. Emmons, the four-star Morganton (N.C.) Freedom running back. While he was committed to Georgia this spring, he reached out to the University of Alabama. After making contact and the staff following up with him, a verbal scholarship offer was extended.
Last Monday, while on Alabama's campus for the second time this summer, Emmons accepted the tender and committed to Nick Saban and company.
"I like their offense and I think I fit their style of play," he previously told BamaMag. "They play serious football down there."
Ranked as the No. 2 running back in the South region, Emmons is also No. 118 overall regardless of position on Scout.
“Last week, he had an opportunity to go down there with his family,” said Brandon Allen, head coach at Freedom High. “He worked with some of the coaches while there and, with his family there, they felt like it was the best decision for the whole family to attend the University of Alabama. They’re excited about getting B.J. and we’re certainly excited for him.
“Alabama is a tremendous opportunity to play college football.”
Emmons, who decommitted from Georgia in early June and held offers from Tennessee, Florida, North Carolina and others, ran for 2,348 yards rushing and 38 touchdowns in 2014. He gave word to Nick Saban and company while on the trip before the news went public on Monday.
“During the process, it was an extremely tough decision, there were many schools he liked,” Allen said. “He wanted to make sure that it was what he wanted to do. He wanted to sit down with his family before the news broke, and I was going to honor the decision. We wanted to honor that for B.J. and his family. He met with all the coaches down there and was up front and honest with them.”
On the field, Allen says the Crimson Tide is getting plenty in the big back.
“What are they not getting?” he said with a laugh. “He’s a superb athlete; he is an extremely powerful runner with good speed. He’s been clocked several times on radar this offseason, between 4.43 and 4.48 (seconds) and he’s up to 232 pounds. I know they’re getting the type of back that they want, someone who and be a workhorse. Probably one thing people don’t know about B.J. is that he’s got tremendous hands and can run great routes. He can even be a third-down back, they’re getting a very special running back.
“The speed of the game will change for him, when you’re talking about SEC football. I know Alabama runs a lot of inside zone and we’re not a zone football team, so those aspects will be different. Those things, coupled with the size of the people he’ll go against will present their own difficulties in the transition.”
Recruited by Alabama assistant Tosh Lupoi, Emmons is the first running back commitment in the Crimson Tide's class of 2016.