Offensive Lineman To Visit Tigers

This in-state product has Auburn in his final three and is expeted to visit the Plains this weekend.

Russellville, Ala.--With a visit list that contains three schools not normally associated with each other in recruiting terms offensive lineman John Watts is a player that has come on strong late in the recruiting process after suffering an injury late in his senior season.

The 6-6 3/4, 267 Watts has already tripped to both Louisville and Lincoln, Neb. for official visits and he's expected to be in Auburn this weekend. With offers on the table from both the Cardinals and Huskers he says he hoping to get that same response on the Plains this coming weekend.

"I've always been a big Auburn fan my whole life," Watts tells Inside The Auburn Tigers. "It's going to be hard to pass that up if they offer me. Auburn has always been a good program and they play in the SEC. I have always wanted to play SEC ball."

A player that had the attention of several schools throughout the year Watts tore his ACL during the quarter finals of the Class 5A playoffs. Despite the pain he sat out just one game before returning for the Golden Tigers to play against Briarwood Christian in the state title game. After having surgery to repair the damage on Dec. 31 he says he's on track to be ready to play next fall.

John Watts in the state championship game this past year in Birmingham.

A two year starter for Coach Perry Swindall's club, Watts played behind current Stanford Cardinal offensive lineman Matt Crum as a sophomore and has been starting since that time. Playing in a wide-open offense that spends much of its time in the shotgun formation, Watts says that he believes he'll be at a big advantage when coming into college football as compared to some linemen.

"Pass blocking is probably my best asset, but I can run block too," Watts says. "I'm pretty comfortable pass blocking. When I went to Nebraska they talked about how their kids did very few drills on kick-slides (pass blocking technique). I've been doing that for four years. If I went there I would have a big head start on people."

While there is little doubt that Auburn would have to be considered the favorite if an offer is made this coming weekend, Watts says that both Louisville and Nebraska have a lot of positives and he could see himself playing for any of his favorites for the next four or five years.

"I like their coach (Bobby Petrino) pretty good," Watts says of Louisville. "It was a big surprise to me to see their stadium and everything around there. Nebraska just has a big tradition. That's about it really. I would play at any three of the schools."

A basketball player at Russellville until his senior season because of the knee injury, Watts averaged eight points and eight rebounds per game last year as a junior. With a bench press of 290 pounds, a power clean of 285 and a squat of 405 Watts has plenty of room for improvement and that should make him a quicker and more powerful player.

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