Gadsden, Ala.--One of the top high school footballplayers in Alabama. regardless of position, four-star Auburn Tigers commitment Alaric Williams got his senior season off to a roaring start in a big win over Etowah last Friday night.
Helping his Southside squad get past the Blue Devils, Williams carried the ball 17 times for 187 yards and scored four touchdowns on the ground while adding three receptions for 50 yards and another score in the win.
“It was good to start off like that in the first game of the season, especially against a good rival,” Williams tells Inside The Auburn Tigers. “I had a good night so that was good, too.
“I actually started off slow to be honest,” he added of his performance. “I didn’t start off that well and it kind of felt weird. There were a bunch of people there and you just had to get into it. It was raining off and on, too, but once I got comfortable it was on after that.”
Finishing outside of the playoffs last season as Southside had to replace much of its offensive line from the year before, including Auburn redshirt freshman Tyler Carr, Williams said the goal has been to turn things around this season and Friday’s win was a great start to that.
“The biggest thing is that I showed the team they can depend on me,” he said. “Not only that, for the team the win against a big rival in a big game like that after coming back from a 5-5 season, starting off with the ‘W’ is always good.”
Playing a big role for the Panthers since his freshman season, Williams is now the guy for Southside and because of that he is focused on developing every part of his game. That work has paid off already this year and he said there’s even more in store.
“Improving my speed is the big thing,” Williams said. “I have been running track the last two years so that has helped. I have also improved my catching ability, I’m trying to make my hands the best out there because you want to have a back that can do both.”
That versatility at the position is something he believes will help him make the transition to Auburn. This season Williams will get to see how his skills translate into the Tigers’ offense with Kerryon Johnson expected to play a big role in 2016. Someone Williams is already very familiar with, Johnson’s season is one that he’ll be playing very close attention to.
“I’m excited to watch him and see how he does,” Williams said. “He’s a freaking really good athlete. I think he’s a better athlete than me honestly. He’s really fast and he’s got really good moves. I’m ready to see what he can do this year. It will be fun to watch.”
He’ll get a chance to see Johnson and the rest of the Auburn Tigers in action on opening night when he plans to be in Jordan-Hare Stadium for the Sept. 3 game against Clemson. Making close to a dozen games over the last few seasons at Auburn, including both the Prayer at Jordan-Hare and the Kick 6, Williams said he’s looking forward to another wild night on the Plains.
“It’s going to be crazy,” Williams said. “I have been to some really good games my past four years, some really good games. You never know what’s going to happen really. You never know when it’s a big game like this.”
Saying he’s still solidly committed to Auburn, Williams said he’s just got one official visit scheduled so far and that is to see the Nebraska Cornhuskers. A school that has been recruiting him for a long time, Nebraska is a place that Williams wants to see a game. He’s scheduled to visit the Cornhuskers the weekend of Sept. 17 to see them take on the Oregon Ducks.