April 6, 2011
Two Tide commits visit Tuscaloosa
University of Alabama commitments Kenyan Drake and Justin Taylor drove over together from Georgia to Tuscaloosa on Monday to watch practice and talk with the coaching staff.
"When we first got there, they were getting ready for the players' meeting," Drake said. "We met with Coach (Burton) Burns, Coach (Kirby) Smart and Coach (Nick) Saban.
"We proceeded to sit in with the players' meeting, first with the entire team meeting, and then the individual meetings where we went with the offense first and then the running backs."
After the meetings concluded, Drake and Taylor followed the team over to the indoor practice facility, where they watched the Crimson Tide compete in practice.
"It was very organized and everything was real quick and fast-paced," Drake said. "Once something was finished and you move on to the next thing, you move on. There was no time wasted or any time for lolly-gagging around, and I really like that.
"They did different things that caught my attention because I was always interested in how a college practice is conducted."
The two Georgia recruits both play running back for their respective high schools, so it was no surprise that they kept a close eye on the Alabama running backs as they went through their drills.
"They looked really good," Drake said. "They looked like they were in midseason form, actually. The coaches didn't have anything to really correct them on. I saw Trent Richardson, (Eddie) Lacy and the new running back that came in, Dee Hart. They all looked pretty impressive."
While Taylor is looking to play exclusively at running back at the next level, Drake has the ability to play in the backfield, as well as at wide receiver. The UA coaches talked with Drake about how they want to utilize him when he gets on campus.
"They're saying that they like that I have the ability to play wide receiver, but they want to use me as a running back because I'm a running back prospect," Drake said.
It was only recently when Drake and Taylor first formed their friendship. When Drake committed to Alabama in February, Taylor was about to visit Tuscaloosa and thought he might pick up an offer from UA.
"Just in case they offered, he asked me why I committed so early," Drake said. "I just told him everything that he thought, I thought, too, so that's how our relationship began. We've been talking ever since then."
Taylor committed two weeks after Drake made his decision. Both players plan to come back for the A-Day spring game on April 16.
Reach Greg Ostendorf at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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