One of the top high school athletes in the country, Russ Yeast took to the road last weekend to check out the Auburn Tigers, Alabama Crimson Tide and the Ole Miss Rebels. Seeing each school for the first time as he prepares to narrow his list to the schools he wants to visit officially, the former Kentucky commitment said the experience was a very good one for him.
"The trip was very fun," Yeast told Inside the Auburn Tigers. "It was fun to go down South and see those schools. They're a little different than the schools up North. It was a good experience. I've always grown up to like the SEC so that was also good for me."
The son of former Kentucky and NFL standout Craig Yeast, he's being recruited as a defensive back by most of the colleges on his list. Building a bond with Auburn defensive backs coach Wesley McGriff over the course of the last few months, Yeast said getting to the Plains for the first time showed him plenty of things to like about the Tigers.
"The Auburn visit was very good," Yeast said. "I got to talk to some of the players and I saw all of campus. I saw where all the players live and what a typical day is for an Auburn player. It was really good. I love the campus."
Being recruited as a cornerback by the Tigers, Yeast said getting to sit down with McGriff was one of the highlights of the visit as was having a very lengthy conversation with Coach Gus Malzahn.
"I got to talk to Coach Malzahn for about 30 or 45 minutes," Yeast said. "I spent a lot of time with Coach McGriff, too.
"The coaching staff, I really liked them," he added. "My dad really liked them too. They know what they're doing. I like the schemes they do. They see me playing corner that can sometimes jump into nickel. That's basically what everybody sees me as. There are opportunities to play at Auburn because they are thin at defensive back right now. It's a good situation."
Also being recruited as a defensive back by Alabama, Yeast said he enjoyed his first visit to Tuscaloosa as well and that included a talk with Nick Saban.
"Alabama was pretty much the same way," Yeast said of the visit compared to Auburn. "It was really nice. I like the coaching staff a lot better than I thought I would. Coach Nick Saban is a really down to earth guy. He's a good guy. He's real cool. When I left there I felt like I liked him and so did my dad."
Rounding out the trio of SEC West schools, Yeast checked out was Ole Miss. The school out of the group that has been recruiting him the longest, Ole Miss had plenty of positives as well said Yeast.
"That was really cool," he said. "Coach Jason Jones and I have been talking to for a while. They offered me before any of those three schools so I have known them a little longer. Coach (Hugh) Freeze is a really family-oriented guy, he's a Christian man. I really liked him as well."
With a pair of visits still remaining this summer, Yeast said he plans to narrow his list and begin to set up his official visits. While he's not sure what schools will make the cut, Yeast said he feels like Auburn has a good shot after seeing the Tigers up close and personal this week.
"I think what's next for me in recruiting is figuring out where I'm going to take my official visits," Yeast said. "I have a visit to Illinois and Iowa coming up, and I will have visited every school that I'm considering this summer. Then I can figure out which official visits I'll take."