The last week or so has been a big one for three-star Tallahassee (Fla.) Lawton Chiles linebacker prospect Amari Gainer. He was impressive at The Opening Orlando enough to win linebacker MVP and earn an invitation to The Opening Finals in Oregon in the summer. That event got him on Scout's top 10 performers list as well.
He followed it up with a visit to local Florida State over the weekend, the school that he grew up a fan of with his father, Herb, playing there in the 1980's. He was originally slated to visit Alabama, where good news was expected.
It came anyway.
"I was initially suppose to meet with (Nick) Saban that weekend but since I couldn't, coach (Brent) Key called and told me about the offer," Gainer said. "I'm just real excited to get an offer from a prestigious school like Alabama.
"He said they liked how well I play in space and get after the QB."
The rising-senior football prospect, with offers from coast to coast, has only been to Tuscaloosa once, as the Crimson Tide hosted Mississippi State during a blowout win in the fall. But it wasn't particularly in-depth.
"I didn't get to see it much because we got there late, but the stadium was real nice," he said. "I talked to coach Key some and met coach Saban. It was good, he just kind of walked around and shook hands with everyone that was there.
"I'm definitely going to get up there as soon as I can, especially since they've offered, I know that there really interested."
In addition to a return trip to Alabama, Gainer says he is hoping to see Auburn, UCLA, Texas, Ohio State and Georgia sometime before a verbal commitment is to be made. At this time, August seems like a target month for the potential pick.
"I'd have it narrowed down by summer and hopefully a decision before the season start," he said. "Still thinking of my top schools right now but I'll have it narrowed down after I check out the schools that have offered."