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Alabama Loses High-End Recruit to SEC Rival

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Alabama already has the No. 1 recruiting class in the country locked up so losing a four-star or two on national signing day is no reason to worry about the Crimson Tide.

Two former Tide commits decided to sign elsewhere Wednesday.

Defensive end Khris Bogle flipped from Alabama to Florida early in the day.

Bogle, a 6-foot-4, 210-pound pass rusher out of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, had committed to the Crimson Tide during a national high school all-star game last month. But on signing day, Bogle, a four-star prospect, signed with coach Dan Mullen’s Gators.

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After Bogle’s flip, another top Tide recruit, defensive back Christian Williams from Daphne, Alabama, jumped ship.

New Miami Hurricanes coach Manny Diaz took advantage of the staff turnover at Alabama to land the four-star cornerback.

Georgia added another five-star player to its recruiting class with wide receiver George Pickens, who was committed to Auburn before choosing the Bulldogs.

The 6-foot-4 Pickens went to Hoover High School in Alabama. He becomes Georgia’s 23rd signee and the fifth five-star player in the class.

There will be an opportunity for Pickens to play immediately. Georgia lost juniors Riley Ridley and Mecole Hardman to the NFL draft. It signed receivers Dominick Blaylock and Makiya Tongue in the December early period.

The Bulldogs already have 14 early enrollees.

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Georgia had the nation’s top-ranked signing class in 2018 and was ranked behind only Alabama in the 247 Sports composite ranking through the early signing period this time.

Late coaching changes after the early signing period can cause high school players to reconsider their commitments. For example, Isheem Young, a four-star safety recruit out of Philadelphia, was verbally committed to West Virginia, but after Dana Holgorsen left Morgantown to become coach at Houston, Young started shopping around again.

Young signed at Iowa State, boosting a class that has a chance to be the highest rated since Matt Campbell took over three years ago.

For Young, Iowa State is also giving him a second chance. He was arrested and charged in connection with a robbery in Philadelphia. Pennlive.com reported that Young pleaded guilty on three counts, including robbery, conspiracy and possession of an instrument of crime, in May. Young, who was 17 at the time of the incident, also agreed to be adjudicated delinquent and to be committed to a juvenile facility.

Campbell says Young is a “highly motivated young man who has expressed tremendous gratitude for the opportunity” to join the Cyclones.

Virginia Tech also made some news early in the day, landing offensive lineman Doug Nester from West Virginia. Nester had verbally committed to Ohio State in 2017 and Penn State was also pushing for him.

About 80 percent of available scholarships in FBS were scooped up during the early signing period in December.

The traditional February signing period is more of an afterthought.

The Western Journal has reviewed this Associated Press story and may have altered it prior to publication to ensure that it meets our editorial standards.

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