At The Combine: Eltoro Freeman

Eltoro Freeman, who grew up an Alabama fan, has never been to a game at Bryant-Denny Stadium other than the A-Day Game this spring. Crimson Tide recruiters might wish that Freeman had been in Tuscaloosa to see one of his other favorite teams last fall.

Last Saturday Eltoro Freeman was one of some 250 outstanding prep players participating in the Combine, one of a handful of such events nationwide. The prestigious combine attracts not only outstanding players, but also college coaches watching for upcoming prospects. Alabama Head Coach Mike Shula was among those in attendance on the Bama practice fields.

"I'm trying to get an idea of where I stand compared to all these great athletes," Freeman said. "I love to compete against great athletes. That's why I like Florida–they've got a lot of great athletes down there."

Florida certainly does have a number of great athletes, but Alabama would probably point to the Crimson Tide's 20-12 all-time record against the Gators, including the last three in a row, and particularly including last year's 31-7 Crimson Tide romp by Bama's athletes over Florida's athletes.

Freeman said that in addition to Alabama and Florida that he is interested in Florida State and Auburn. Although Freeman said he has never been to a game at Bama, he has been to a number of Crimson tide practices. And, he said, he intends to visit Bryant-Denny Stadium for games this fall.

Freeman is a 5-11, 200-pound linebacker and running back at Benjamin Russell High School in Alexander City. He was clocked at 4.53 in the 40 running into the wind. He was used on offense only on special situations last year (he had six rushes for 100 yards with one touchdown) and expects to be on defense in college. As a defender he was in on over 100 tackles, 52 of them for lost yardage, and had eight sacks, three forced fumbles, one fumble recovery and two pass deflections.

Freeman has already had competition with good athletes both at the Combine in Tuscaloosa, and also at the Combine in connection with the U.S. Army All-American Game in San Antonio last January. Freeman has a busy summer planned. He said he intends to attend football camps at Alabama, Auburn, LSU, Florida, FSU, Arkansas, Kentucky, and Mississippi State.

He said he also has some work to do academically as he has a 2.8 grade point average, but only a 15 on his first try on the ACT.

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