Zeigler told Inside the Auburn Tigers that he committed to Auburn assistant coach Phillip Lolley, who recruits parts of Louisiana for the Tigers. Zeigler is Auburn's 12 public verbal commitment.
Toby Zeigler (Photo courtesy of Stephen Hill)
A standout at an Auburn football camp, Zeigler says that he has been leaning to the Tigers since this past summer. He also considered LSU, Arkansas and several other colleges outside the SEC, but says, "I don't know if there really was a second choice. Auburn has been real strong with me. Auburn has been my leader and it was a tossup with everybody else after that."
Zeigler, who runs a 4.5 40 and is known for having excellent hands, says, "I really liked the people I met in Auburn. I get along real well with Coach Lolley and Coach Greg Knox (AU receivers coach) and I got to meet Coach (Tommy) Tuberville. I liked the atmosphere at Auburn. I have been a big football fan all of my life and Auburn has always been up there as one of the top teams in the SEC. I believe the SEC is the best conference in the country and I want to play with the best players."
In the final game of the regular season last week, Zeigler was not scheduled to play while trying to recover from a sinus infection. However, he dressed out for the contest so he would be ready if needed. After Neville fell behind 14-7, the wide receiver says he was tired of watching and happy to participate in the game for the district championship. "Coach asked me if I was ready to play and I was so mad that we were down I said, ‘Put me in, I'm ready.' It was a big game for us."
In a rescue worthy of the Lone Ranger, Zeigler helped save the day for his team by catching four passes for 130 yards and two touchdowns, bringing his TD total to an even dozen for the season.
As a junior, he had nearly 1,000 receiving yards but says he will have a hard time matching that total in 2001. "I am not sure of my exact numbers, but I would need to have a lot of yards in the playoffs to get to 1,000. A lot of teams have been doubling me and playing zone defenses to stop me so that has affected my numbers."
Auburn's list of verbal commitments (now at a dozen) includes:
•Wesley Hill, a 6-3, 215, 4.8 QB/Athlete from Crisp County High in Cordele, Ga. He will be a December signee who is scheduled to enroll at AU for classes in January.
•Tyrone Martin, a 6-1, 214, 4.5, linebacker from Benjamin Russell High in Alexander City, Ala.
•Lawrence Lilly, a 6-4 1/2, 250 tight end from Montevallo High.
•Brandon Williams, a 6-1, 195, 4.4 defensive back from Shaw High School in Columbus, Ga.
•Greg Wilkerson, a 6-3, 230, 4.5 athlete from Bowdon, Ga., High, who will be placed in junior college by the Tigers.
•Justin Bruce, a 6-9, 250, 4.6 tight end from Pepperell High in Lindale, Ga.
•Kevin Sears, a 6-4 1/2, 217-pound, 4.6 defensive back from Russellville High.
•William Ward, a 6-2, 250, 4.9 center for Prattville High. He is also an excellent deep snapper.
•Oliver King, a 6-2, 215, 4.5 linebacker from North Surry High in Mount Airy, N.C.
•Kevis Burnam, a 6-2, 230, 4.6 linebacker from Macon County High in Montezuma, Ga.
•Seante Williams a 6-5, 250, 4.65 defensive end at Coffeyville, Kan., Community College who is originally from Pine Forest High in Pensacola, Fla.
Tiger Ticket Extra: Academics should not be a problem with Zeigler who is a good student who has obtained a qualifying ACT score...Zeigler scored three touchdowns in one game this season. He caught three passes for 101 yards with two going for touchdowns, including a TD on the opening play of the game vs. Northwood. He also returned a punt for a TD...He played basketball last year, but plans to concentrate on getting ready for college football after his senior season is completed at Neville. His 8-2 team is ranked fourth in the state. "I plan to get in the weight room and I will work on my speed at the track," Zeigler says.