Defender Interested In Tigers

This out of state defensive end has the Tigers high on his list.

Jennings, La.--It's no secret that Auburn is looking to reload along its defense front with the 2002 recruiting class and especially at the defensive end position. Alonzo Manuel is just one of several prep athletes that the AU coaching staff is looking to lure to The Plains just for that purpose.

Manuel starred for his Jennings, La., High School team that advanced to the third round of the Louisiana state playoffs in 2001. The six-foot-three, 240-pounder had 88 total tackles and 49 solo stops during his senior season. He also added five quarterback sacks. Manuel tells Inside The Auburn Tigers his strengths as a defensive end are his "pass rush and chasing people down."

Auburn is on Manuel's short list of schools that he would like to visit. His first official visit will be Dec. 7 to Texas A&M and Manuel has already scheduled a trip to check out Auburn on Jan. 11. The only other official visit he has set up is to LSU on Jan. 18.

Manuel has never been to Auburn's campus, but he is learning a lot about the program from AU defensive tackles coach Don Dunn. "Coach Dunn is pretty cool," he says. "He calls out and tells me about the school."

One of the things that Auburn has that Manuel wants out of his college choice is a good engineering program. He also notes that he wants to go somewhere with a nice campus and a great atmosphere.

Manuel did get to see three college football games this season all on unofficial visits. Manuel was in Baton Rouge when LSU played Florida. He also saw Louisiana-Monroe play both Troy State and Louisiana-Lafayette.

He said he won't make a decision until he has taken all of his official visits. Manuel does plan on taking all five of his trips with Tulane and Southern likely being the schools that get his last two.

TIGER TICKET EXTRA: ...Manuel has been playing football since junior high and has only played one position--defensive end...With Auburn losing three of its four top defensive ends to graduation, the situation looks like a perfect fit for Manuel, but he said that the chance to play early won't be a factor in his decision.

Copyright 2001 Inside the Auburn Tigers

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