Auburn Camp: Stars on the Sidelines

Auburn had some of the top prospects in the country on their sidelines Saturday watching the Tiger coaches work prospects. It was a star-studded group.

While prospects like future five-star defensive lineman Robert Nkemdiche, talented 2013 signal caller Cord Sandberg, Scout300 defensive lineman Leonard Williams, and elite junior linebacker Daniel McMillan competed at the Auburn camp Saturday, there were some talented prospects watching them from the sidelines.

Auburn had an impressive list of visitors over the weekend and some of the best saw no reason to compete.

One came with big news and Jovon Robinson committed to Auburn early on Saturday before the camp got cranked up.

The number one player in Tennessee will team up with T.J. Yeldon in the offensive backfield at Auburn. Both are rated at two of the top 150 prospects in American on Scout.

Robinson is a big back at 6-feet, 220 pounds and he can move those chains. He is excited about teaming up with Yeldon and playing for Offensive Coordinator Gus Malzahn.

""Coach Malzahn knows what he wants to do with the offense and what he wants to do with the players, the weapons he is going to have," Robinson said. "It dawned on me how me and T.J. Yeldon were going to be sharing the load also with all of the current running backs at Auburn. It is just exciting."

He was commitment number 11 for Gene Chizik and AU.

The fastest target on their campus was like Ronald Darby, a five-star athlete out of Oxon Hill (MD) Potomac. He is currently committed to Notre Dame, but to travel to Auburn, some interest is there. How solid his commitment is to the Irish is up in the air and when asked about that over the weekend, he declined to comment. Darby is currently rated as the number cornerback in America.

The Tigers impressed one of the top offensive prospects in the state of Florida. Evan Goodman traveled up from Lakeland, Fla. and he now lists Auburn in his top five.

"I do not really have a list together yet, but I know they will be in it," Goodman told Scout. "I am going to visit them officially when they play Florida in October. "I really like their strong family atmosphere. They have a great staff that really cares about their players and I thought Auburn was a great place."

Goodman is currently rated as the number 19 offensive tackle in the country.

A versatile prospect spent some time on The Plains over the weekend and that was D.J. Reader. He is a 6-foot-3, 300 pound lineman who could play on the offensive or defensive side of the ball on the next level. He has an impressive offer list and Auburn is one of them.

The Tigers are currently in Reader's top 10 and he has interest in them.

"My visit to Auburn was pretty good," Reader said Monday morning. "I like them and they said I could pick to play either offensive line or defensive line if I went there. I like their tradition and they are in my top 10 right now. I will trim my list down more during football season."

Reader is out of Grimsley, N.C.

Leeds, Ala. linebacker Javiie Mitchell was back at Auburn on Saturday. After competing in the Auburn camp back in June, he decided to just watch this time. He has the Tiger offer and the Tigers are still high on his list.

A night after picking up an offer from Georgia and committing to the Bulldogs at their Dawg Night camp, 2014 running back Stanley Williams spent Saturday at Auburn.

The 5-foot-7, 172 pound speedster out of Winder (GA) Apalachee met with Coach Chizik and he has some interest in Auburn now.

"I grew up loving Georgia and that is the school I dreamed about playing for one day, so I am excited about my commitment to them," said Williams. "I still have a long way to go though in my high school career, so Auburn offering me is exciting too. "Coach Luper (AU running backs coach) was the coach that told me about the offer and then I met with Coach Chizik. I really liked Coach Chizik, he was a nice guy. He understood my commitment to Georgia, but he said Auburn was still going to recruit me because there is a lot of time left before I go to college. Auburn is a good school and I might visit them again."

Williams also has offers from Clemson and Georgia Tech.

Scout100 wide receiver Chris Black was at AU on Saturday, but more for support of his teammates than to look at the Tigers. He is set to announce his decision on August 24 and the Tigers are not a school he is considering.

"I am down to Alabama, Florida, and Florida State," Black said. "I am ready to commit and start thinking about my future. Auburn is a good school and we had a lot of guys at their camp, but I just watched and tried to support them."

Black is a quick and elusive wide receiver out of Jacksonville (FL) First Coast.

One of the top prospects in their home state spent Saturday at Auburn. Prattville defensive tackle Justin Shanks really feels at home when there.

"Auburn is like a mini Prattville," Shanks said. "Auburn is a school I really like. I like the coaches, I like the environment, and I just feel good when I am there."

Many expect it to come down to Alabama and Auburn for this 6-foot-4, 320 pound interior defensive lineman.

The Auburn commitments stick together and are bonding with current Tigers.

Ricky Parks, Josh Holsey, and Darius Philon were three Tiger commitments on campus Saturday. You did not see them alone.

Kiehl Frazier, Erique Florence, Brandon Fulse, Jeff Whitaker, Gabe Wright, and other current Tigers were out on the practice fields hanging out with current commitments.

They seem to close already and you hear so many recruiting talking about the family atmosphere at Auburn, it was easy to see why over the weekend.

"I just went to Auburn Saturday to hang with the coaches and support them," said Holsey. "It feels like home there and they treat me as if I am already a player there. Coach Chizik was just happy to have me there."

Chad Simmons started out with Scout in 2003 covering top talent in Georgia and other areas in the South. He then moved on to another Recruiting Service from 2004-2008 before returning to Scout the first of 2009 to become Southeast Recruiting Manager.
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