Ziemba Picks Tigers, Who's Next for Auburn?

A report on Auburn's lastest football commitment and a look at this weekend's recruiting happenings for the Tigers is featured.

Rogers, Ark.--The Auburn Tigers added another impressive commitment to a talented football recruiting class on Friday morning when, as expected for days, big Lee Ziemba announced that he will sign with the Tigers.

Making his announcement at Rogers High School, the Arkansas Gatorade Player of the Year selected Tommy Tuberville's Tigers over the Arkansas Razorbacks. Ziemba is rated by Scout.com as the state's number two prospect behind his friend, quarterback Kodi Burns from Fort Smith, Ark., who is also committed to playing his college football for Coach Tommy Tuberville's Tigers.

Ziemba becomes Auburn's 21st public verbal commitment and the Auburn coaching staff can now turn its attention to this weekend's recruits as the Tigers are expected to entertain a half dozen prospects for official visits.

One of the country's top offensive tackle prospects and the Gatorade Player of the Year in Arkansas, the 6-7, 305 Ziemba visited Auburn last weekend. After that Ziemba let it be known to both the Auburn and Arkansas coaching staffs that his recruiting was done and he would be attending Auburn. After that it was a waiting game until his public announcement Friday morning.

A physical player who dominates opponents with his combination of size, strength and quickness, Ziemba earned just about every award possible in the state of Arkansas this season as he helped his team reach the state championship game before losing for the first time.

A two-time All-State performer, Ziemba has had a part of Auburn with him for his entire football career at Rogers in the form of an Auburn sweatshirt worn under his jersey on the Friday before football games.

The sweatshirt was worn because Ziemba grew up an Auburn fan and the son of parents who both went to school on the Plains. "My dad graduated from Auburn and my mom attended Auburn," Ziemba says, explaining his interest in the Tigers. "I love the area. It is like a second home to me.

"Auburn has a top-notch football program," he says. "They are in the Top 10 every year and I have heard great things about the community, the togetherness of the program and the fans. It is a great atmosphere."

As a senior Ziemba made 31 pancake blocks and added 43 knockdown blocks. He also was in on 11 tackles and 1 1/2 sacks playing defense in goal line situations.

Ziemba's commitment puts the finishing touches on an offensive line class that could be among the best in the country this year. Auburn OL coach Hugh Nall personally recruited both Ziemba and Burns from the state of Arkansas.

Lee Ziemba

In addition to Ziemba, Auburn has offensive line commitments from the nation's number two ranked center, Ryan Pugh of Hoover, who is visiting Auburn this weekend, as well as talented high school seniors Chaz Ramsey, Kyle Coulahan and Jared Cooper. Cooper, Coulahan and Ramsey were three of the 17 players who took official visits last week.

Auburn's other commitments are from running back Enrique Davis, fullback John Douglas, tight end Bailey Woods, wide receivers Chris Slaughter and Quindarius Carr, defensive linemen Josh Chapman, Tim Lamb and A.J. Greene, linebacker Eltoro Freeman, defensive backs Ryan Williams, Jonnie Dixon and Michael Slade, athlete Bo Harris and kicker Wes Byrum. Fellow recruit Brent Slusher, who plays tight end, is already on the Auburn campus taking classes after graduating high school early. Dixon is considered a sign to place prospect due to academics.

Ryan Pugh was a standout in the U.S. Army All-Star Game earlier this month in Texas.

This weekend's official visitor group includes teammates Pugh and Chapman, both early commitments to the Tigers, plus four uncommitted prospects. The other players expected in are Auburn High School wide receiver Ralph Spry, the son of Auburn track coach Ralph Spry, defensive end Jay Howard from Orlando, Fla., offensive lineman Jermaine Johnson from St. Thomas Aquinas in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

D.J. Stafford, a sign to place defensive end prospect from LaGrange, Ga., High, was planning to visit this weekend, but is not expected to make the trip. Defensive end was an early commitment to the Florida Gators, but decided he wanted to check out the Auburn program.

Josh Chapman was impressive as a senior at Hoover High.

Several key Auburn recruiting targets will also be on the road this weekend taking visits. Auburn commitment Enrique Davis is scheduled to visit Florida State along with other Auburn recruiting targets safety Michael McNeil of Davidson High in Mobile and Dillard High of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., defensive end Antoine Carter. Davis, a tailback from Mosley High in Lynn Haven, Fla., was a fall verbal commitment to the Tigers. McNeil, who visited Auburn last weekend, is not committed and the same is true of Carter, who took his official visit to Auburn last month.

Some other prime Auburn targets who have scheduled official visits this week include Floridians Josh Bynes and Jabaal Sheard to the University South Carolina. Sheard, a defensive end, visited Auburn last weekend while Bynes took his official visit to AU last October. Nick Fairley, a tight end and defensive end from Williamson High in Mobile who visited Auburn last weekend, is scheduled to check out Southern Miss next.


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