Pope family reunion set for Tuscaloosa?

With the Catholic Church in Rome, the election of a new pope is announced by releasing white smoke. But soon in Tuscaloosa, a new Pope may well be announced by a young Texas athlete making a choice a little later this week.

Roshawn Pope, the 5-11, 180-pound brother of Tide commitment Derrick Pope, visited the Capstone this weekend, and had nothing but good things to say afterwards. "It was the best one so far," he said of his visit.

Pope had previously journeyed to Oklahoma State, Arkansas and Houston.

During his visit to Alabama, Roshawn also spoke highly of LSU. But that may now have changed. "I have one more visit scheduled to LSU, but I might cancel. There's a possibility I know where I might go. I might not need to visit LSU."

If Roshawn Pope plays wide receiver at Alabama, then his Uncle, Kenith Pope would be his position coach.

While Pope says he hasn't made a final decision, only two schools are in the running. "It's 50-50 between Alabama and Oklahoma State," he says.

Pope played quarterback at Galveston's Ball High School, but is being projected as a wide receiver or cornerback in college. That's fine with Pope. "My uncle Kenith would be my position coach. That's a positive."

A physical athlete with very good speed, Pope rushed for more than 1,250 yards his senior year in high school.

Family or not, Roshawn still had questions for the coaching staff. "I wanted to know if they planned on playing me right away. I was thinking about redshirting my freshman year, but they don't want me to."

The Tide has one more hurdle to face before Pope makes his decision--an in-house visit by Oklahoma State's coaches. "OSU is coming Tuesday, and I'll decide Tuesday or Wednesday."

EDITOR'S NOTE: If Pope commits, then he's thought likely to delay his entry into The University until January of 2003, thereby allowing Alabama to count his scholarship against next season's numbers.

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