Linebacker narrows focus

For top linebacker prospect Mitchell Thomas of Smiths, Alabama, there is still a long way to go in the recruiting process. But at this point his attention is focused mainly on two schools.

Following Alabama's game Saturday versus Auburn, Thomas told that he is still undecided. "I'm looking at several schools," Thomas said. "Alabama, Auburn, Notre Dame, Florida, South Carolina, LSU---and more than that have offered me."

Considered one of the top linebacking prospects in the state, Thomas (6-2, 215, 4.49) at one time had committed to sign with the Tide. But he quickly took back that commitment, explaining that his father preferred that he hold off while taking a look at what other schools had to offer.

Teammate Michael Hill and Thomas, both of whom starred for Smith Station High School, had committed at the same time. Hill, a top defensive tackle prospect, remains committed to Alabama.

Numerous schools are on his radar screen, but Thomas is narrowing his focus to just two. "I've set official visits for December 6th to Alabama and December 14th to Notre Dame," Thomas said.

Thomas (left) and current Tide commitment Michael Hill (right) are high school teammates.

Thomas likes Dennis Franchione and the Tide staff, but he and his father have also been impressed with Irish Head Coach Tyrone Willingham.

A versatile athlete, Thomas played both running back and linebacker in high school, while also running track. He runs the 55 meters in 6.95 seconds and placed 8th in the state. Thomas also sports a 33-inch vertical jump.

When asked, Thomas couldn't remember his stats from his senior season. "I was hampered by a bad hamstring for the entire season," he said.

Limited to only 18 signees this recruiting year, Alabama's class is filling up quickly. At this point the Tide will probably sign one more linebacker, and depending on how things play out could end up taking two.

It's very possible that the Tide could finish taking commitments long before signing day in February. "I may announce a decision after taking those two scheduled visits," Thomas said.

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