Yeldon Explains His Decision to Choose Auburn

T.J. Yeldon, the standout running back prospect from Daphne, discusses his decision to play college football for the Auburn Tigers.

Pensacola, Fla.--T.J. Yeldon says that now his recruiting is finished he is not only happy with his college choice, he is happy he can turn his focus to his senior season at Daphne, Ala., High School.

Yeldon committed to the Tigers on Tuesday while in Pensacola, Fla., where he is participating in a basketball camp with his high school teammates at Pine Forest High School.

"I didn't want to have all of that (recruiting) on me throughout the school year so I think it was a good decision," Yeldon tells Inside the Auburn Tigers in discussing the timing of his commitment. Early in the year he had talked about doing it in January at the U.S. Army All-American Game.

"I feel real good about my decision to attend Auburn,"?Yeldon adds. "I am not looking ahead to anything now other than my senior year."

Despite choosing Coach Gene Chizik's Tigers, the 6-1 1/2, 210-pound running back still has a decision to make about his schooling.

"I only have three classes left to graduate from high school so I have a decision to make about whether I should finish early in December and start college then," he says. "That is something I am thinking about doing, but I am not sure yet."

He notes the idea of getting an early start on college is appealing, but so is playing his final season with his friends on the Daphne basketball team.

Yeldon's combination of size and speed, along with his on-the-field production going back to his ninth grade season, earned him approximately 30 scholarship offers by colleges from coast to coast. He helped Daphne finish 15-0 last season and win the Class 6A state championship.

Commenting on the main reasons he chose the Tigers, Yeldon says, "I get along with the coaches, the players and Auburn runs the same offense we run on my high school team. Going to Auburn I won't have to learn a new offensive system when I get to college."

Yeldon notes that he is a good fit for the system the Tigers run under the direction of offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn. Auburn likes backs who are effective running both inside and on the corners as well as running backs who have good hands and are effective receivers. Yeldon has all of those skills and a work ethic to be successful. His summer schedule includes 10 workouts a week under the direction of a personal trainer as he aims to become bigger and stronger.

The rising senior says the fact that Auburn is close enough to home for his family to regularly attend his games is a factor, too, in his college choice. "They are happy about my decision and I am glad they are pleased with it," he says. "That is important to me."

Yeldon is Auburn's ninth public verbal commitment for the 2012 signee class. The Tigers are expected to sign 25 players in February.


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