And landing a talent like L.J. Abrams could be the fuel that MSU is looking for to ignite their non-regional recruiting prowess.
"They've been sending me letters," Abrams says of Michigan State. "I haven't gone to their junior day, but I don't know if I'll be able to make it to them being down here in Alabama. It's kind of far away."
Despite the distance, MSU's recent reputation travels well. "I know they're getting better," he says.
And that's an important factor in his ultimate decision.
"I'm interested in people that will give me a chance to win some football games and just get better as a football player," he explains.
Down-south teams have certainly taken an interest in Abrams. UAB offered him already and much of the SEC is leaning in to take a closer look. Abrams reports Mississippi State as recruiting him the hardest and steady interest from Vanderbilt, Alabama and Auburn.
You would be mistaken to think Abrams is locked into planting roots in Dixie with all of the southern hospitality he's receiving.
"Oh no, because I have family all over the place. I actually have an uncle that's in Detroit," he says.
What many teams see (outside of his athletic, 6-foot-6+, 310-pound, and-still-developing body) is a dedicated student of the game who understands the importance of superb technique. "I come off with a flat back out of my 3-point stance with explosiveness," he says. "I think I'm good at pass protection."
And the confidence he speaks with is justified, judging by how well he contained some of his opposition last year.
In recruiting the playing field is even and Abrams says it's open season.
"I want everyone who's interested in me to be interested in me. "I don't want to close off any doors," he says. "I'm interested in anybody that's interested in me."