At one time as many as 10 athletes were tentatively scheduled to travel to Tuscaloosa this weekend for official visits. But with the Tide taking two more commitments this week, pushing their total now to 27, as of Wednesday afternoon this weekend's visit number was down to five--possibly six.
Interestingly, every scheduled visitor attended either Hillcrest High School in Tuscaloosa or White High School in Dallas, Texas.
Three Hillcrest Patriots should definitely be on hand, including offensive tackle Cody Davis, cornerback Travis Robinson and safety Jake Wingo. All three athletes have previously committed to sign with Alabama.
A room for tailback Markus Manson will also be reserved at the visit hotel, but at this point it's not certain whether or not Manson will make the trip.
As all Tide recruiting fans know, Manson is publicly committed to Florida, and the Gator coaches are pulling out all the stops, trying to convince him not to make the Tide trip. It's certainly possible that Manson could defy their wishes and attend, if for no other reason than to spend an enjoyable two days with his teammates. But unfortunately, at this point no one close to the Tide program would be surprised if Manson stays away.
Two athletes will be flown in from Texas to visit the UA campus. Defensive end Micah Howeth and tailback Riyad Rogers are due in Friday afternoon.
Buford, Georgia defensive lineman Neil Brown said as recently as yesterday that he intended to take an official visit to Alabama. He told TheInsiders.com that his high school basketball schedule might interfere, but if that happened he simply come earlier for a Thursday/Friday visit. But yesterday's announcement by Lorenzo Washington that he was signing with the Tide probably ended Brown's interest. Certainly Alabama appears to be out of scholarships.
Rumor has Brown now leaning to Tennessee, but some question whether or not the Vols have actually come forth with an unconditional offer. Either way, the Tide now appears to be out of the picture.
Michael Brown of Atlanta, Georgia was also recently scheduled for an official visit to Alabama, but the defensive lineman announced yesterday that he was switching from the Bulldogs to the Gators and was finished with recruiting.
A fifth Hillcrest athlete at one time was on Bama's list for this weekend. But according to a report by Greg Wallace in the Birmingham Post-Herald, linebacker/defensive end Kris Guyton recently committed to UAB.
And an even earlier schedule listed Jacquez McKissic, an Opelika line prospect as visiting on the 30th, but that has been canceled for several weeks.
RECRUITING NOTES: Alabama is allowed to bring in 19 new scholarshipped players this fall. The Tide is expected to sign as many as 22 to 24 players in February, anticipating that several will not become qualified. It's also possible that one or more players may be asked to delay entry into The University until the following January, counting against 2005 scholarship numbers, depending on how qualifying issues play out.
Read all of the recent recruiting stories on Alabama recruits from TheInsiders.com.