Staples Enjoys Auburn Visit

Former UAB wide receiver Jamari Staples talks about his visit to Auburn, a possible offer, and taking two more visits.

A player looking for a second chance following the abrupt end to the UAB football program, 6-4 wide receiver Jamari Staples took a visit to Auburn this week to check out the Tigers. Watching the Tigers practice in preparation for the Outback Bowl against Wisconsin and also sitting down with Gus Malzahn, Rhett Lashlee and Dameyune Craig, Staples said he enjoyed everything about the trip.

“It was a good visit,” Staples said. “I got to know a lot of the guys and see what the practices are like and the players are like and the coaches. It was a fun visit.”

Available to enroll immediately and be eligible to play in 2015, Staples has several offers including Florida and Louisville, and plans to visit the Cardinals this weekend and the Gators next week. As for Auburn, he said it’s still just wait and see at the moment.

“We’re just kind of waiting to make sure everything goes through academic-wise,” Staples said. “They want to make sure there are no problems there. It seems pretty good so far.

“Not really (any timeline for an offer),” he added. “They said they would be in touch over the next couple of days. I’m just waiting to see what happens.”

Playing in an up-tempo offense under coordinator Bryant Vincent at UAB, Staples is used to going full bore on the practice field. Because of that he said watching Auburn work wasn’t anything new to him, but he admits it would be a fun system to play in.

“It was kind of similar to some of the things I have already been through,” Staples said. “It was fun to watch and would probably be even more fun to do. I enjoyed it.”

Playing right away for the Blazers in 2013 out of Central High School of Clay County, Staples proved to be a steal of the recruiting class. Finishing second on the team with 31 catches for 458 yards, he added four touchdowns in his eight starts. Battling through injuries last season, he only played in nine games in 2014 with nine catches for 190 yards and a touchdown.

Now with options available and with three weeks until he must enroll at a school to be eligible for spring practice, Staples said getting an offer would be big for him because it’s close to home, but it won’t change the face that he needs to make the best decision for his future.

“I’m just looking for a place I feel like I’m at home,” Staples said. “This (Auburn) has a very home feel because it’s very close to home for me. It’s a place where they care about their players. People go there to work.

“It (Auburn offer) would mean a lot,” he added. “It would open up another door for me. It’s just a process, but it would mean a lot.”

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