Nation's Top Juco cornerback to Alabama
Christmas came a little early for Head Coach Nick Saban when the nation's top junior college cornerback, Travell Dixon, committed to the Crimson Tide. Dixon has been a high-priorty for Alabama the past several months especially with the expected departures in the secondary to the NFL following the BCS National Championship.
Dixon held fans (and coaches) hostage on twitter with an announcement scheduled at 8:00 p.m. EST. He started the week with less than 500 followers, but quickly built close to 1,500 by announcement time.
"After careful consideration on the behalf of my parents & family I decided that in the best interest Academically and Athletically I chosen," Dixon's first words an announcement was forthcoming..
He proceeded with, "THE ADAGE"- A picture is worth a thousand words."
As all sat and hit refresh waiting for a photo, the next screen shot had Dixon and his family dressed head-to-toe in Alabama gear, along with Dixon flashing the Alabama houndstooth gloves Mark Ingram made famous.
"I knew my decision about 8:30 tonight. It was extremely hard decision for me," Dixon said. "In the end I went with my heart. My heart led me to Alabama.
"I talked to the Alabama coaches before I talked to any media. They told me they were very excited. They were happy I committed to them. I am excited about getting there.
"Alabama has great tradition and facilities. It's great being able to be coached by Nick Saban. He has a great track record with defensive backs. Alabama has also done a great job with junior college players. They do a great job preparing them for the League.
"I am very happy to have my decision behind me. I am really looking forward to my career at Alabama. It was a long road. I went from 45 offers to narrowing it down to three schools. In the end my heart told me Alabama was the best place for me."
Dixon had said in an earlier interview, "The situation at Alabama and how they develop their junior college players is what stands out to me. I like their NFL style of defense. I am a man corner. That's my specialty. I feel like it would be a great fit."
Dixon took an official visit to the Capstone in November when the Tide played LSU.
"That was my first-ever SEC game," Dixon said. "The atmosphere was insane. It's a different speed than junior college. It was a different environment. I have never seen anything like it before. It was just great with it being my first SEC game. There was a lot of positive energy
"It was a good football game. It was a good defensive game. It lived up to my expectations. I wanted to see a good game no matter who won. I love the defense at Alabama. That's what I like most about them. Watching how the players prepare for the game was the best part of my visit."
The Tide's head coach is a big part of Dixon's reasoning for choosing Alabama.
"Nick Saban's name and his history speaks for itself," he said. "He sends all of his junior college recruits to the NFL. He is a mastermind coach as far as defensive backs.
"My overall thoughts about Alabama are very positive Everything about Alabama is positive. There is positive energy from everyone there. I really liked that."
Dixon has the size (6-2, 200-pounds) Nick Saban looks for in his cornerbacks. There is a good chance Alabama will have at least three, possibly four defensive backs taken in the first three rounds of the 2012 NFL Draft (Dre Kirkpatrick, Mark Barron, DeQuan Menzie and Robert Lester). Kirkpatrick and Lester have yet to announce their NFL decisions.
Dixon will arrive in Tuscaloosa January 11th to begin classes. He will jumpstart his career with the Tide by going through spring practice and competing for a starting position in the fall of 2012.
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