Obomanu Discusses His Pick of The Tigers

Selma High star Benjamin Obomanu is one of the South's more heavily recruited prospects.

Selma, Ala.--Parade All-American wide receiver Benjamin Obomanu, the most heavily uncommitted football prospect in the state of Alabama, drew cheers at his Monday press conference when he announced he will sign with the Auburn Tigers on Wednesday.

Obomanu's four finalists included Alabama, LSU and Notre Dame. He also considered Florida prior to the departure of Coach Steve Spurrier.

Obomanu was in an upbeat, positive mood at his press conference and had these comments on his decision to stay in-state and play for the Tigers.

"One thing my family didn't want to do was pressure me into the school they really liked," he said. "But, it did make me feel comfortable that I will be able to see my family in the stands almost every game...and, to be a mentor for all the kids and all of the people in Selma. The thing they have really done for me is support me throughout high school and my whole life. I feel if I go to Auburn University they will still be able to support me." His family grew up Alabama fans, making the recruiting job even more impressive by Joe Whiit and head man Tommy Tuberville.

Obomanu says he is excited about playing with other top in-state prospects he met on the recruiting trail like defensive end Ben Grubbs of Elmore County High, defensive tackle T.J. Jackson and athlete Will Herring from Opelika and Loachapoka High star Montae Pitts. He says he is looking forward to his freshman year and forming "a bond" with those highly regarded players who will sign with Auburn on Wednesday.

Several hundred friends, students, teachers (one sang "I Believe I Can Fly" as part of the ceremony), administrators plus media gathered at the Selma High gym for the announcement. Obomanu sat on a podium with four folders in the school colors of each of his finalists.

He teased the crowd on his pick before letting them know that it was Auburn. He then removed his shirt and tie to reveal an Auburn University jersuey (number 21). His family, who was standing behind him on the podium, took off their jackets and showed Auburn shirts, too.

Benjamin Obomanu is shown in action as a senior.

The speedster, who runs a sub 4.5 40, took his fourth and final official visit to Notre Dame last week and was snowed in at South Bend. Fighting Irish coaches were in Montgomery on Friday to watch him play in a basketball game.

Auburn head coach Tommy Tuberville made an in-home visit with Obomanu on Saturday night along with Joe Whitt, who recruits the Selma area for Auburn, and wide receivers coach Greg Knox.

An honor student with a 4.0-plus grade point average, Obomanu hopes to become the Selma High valedictorian later this year. He also is a starting forward for the Selma Saints in basketball.

Tiger Ticket Extra: Obomanu says he plans to attend summer classes at AU and hopes to attend as many spring practices as possible to get a head start learning the offense.

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