Four-Star OT Visits Tigers

This top offensive tackle prospect talks about his unofficial visit to Auburn on Saturday.

Nashville, Tenn.--Looking for help at the offensive tackle position, the Auburn Tigers played host to one of the South's best at the position on Saturday as four-star prospect James Stone took an unofficial visit to check out Gene Chizik's program.

A 6-5, 297-pounder, Stone says that while he had not been to Auburn before, he found out pretty quickly that the Tigers were going to be one of the teams he's going to keep an eye on down the road.

"It was my first trip to Auburn and I enjoyed it," Stone said. "I liked the hospitality. I had never heard a lot about Auburn and to see the people and how they feel about football, I really liked it…it's a great place.

"Auburn helped themselves today," he adds. "It really put Auburn on my mind."

Being recruited by Auburn secondary coach Phillip Lolley, Stone says that taking the time to sit down with the coaches and get a feel for what they wanted out of him on offense was a very big reason why he visited on Saturday.

"It went nice," Stone says. "We got to meet with the coaches. I talked with coach (Phillip) Lolley and coach (Gene) Chizik and coach (Jeff) Grimes. They showed us the offense and a little of what Auburn football is all about. They expressed to how I would be able to come here and the opportunity I would have."

Playing a position of need, it's not surprising that Stone is becoming a hot commodity in the recruiting world. Currently holding 18 offers including Auburn, Alabama, LSU, Mississippi State, Georgia, Vanderbilt, Tennessee, Stanford, California, Texas Tech, Notre Dame, Duke, Maryland, North Carolina, Virginia and Florida State.

"It's good because I have options," Stone says. "I'll be able to pick the best place to for me, where I feel like I fit the best."

In the spring Auburn has just four offensive tackles on the roster. Andrew McCain is a senior, Lee Ziemba a junior, and A.J. Greene and Vance Smith are both sophomores. Smith was a tight end last year and has been moved to provide some depth for the Tigers. With the need at the position, Stone notes Auburn is an attractive place for any offensive tackle looking for early playing time.

"They said they weren't very deep at the position," Stone said. "They said if I came in and worked hard then I had the opportunity to play there, maybe early. Or redshirt and play the next year. I want to be able to get the opportunity to play."

Soon to be a three-year starter at offensive tackle, Stone also started at defensive tackle as a junior. In addition he played power forward for the basketball team.


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