Hoover's Humphrey picks Tide
by Marq Burnett
mburnett@annistonstar.com
Jan 29, 2014 | 1970 views |  0 comments | 18 18 recommendations | email to a friend | print
TUSCALOOSA -- Alabama picked up another five-star prospect with Hoover cornerback Marlon Humphrey pledging to the Crimson Tide on Wednesday.

Humphrey announced his decision through Twitter.

“Thanks for everyone that has supported me this far. I’m happy to say I am committed to the University of Alabama!! #RollTide,” Humphrey said in a Twitter post.

Humphrey chose Alabama over Florida State. He is the Tide’s 25th commitment for the 2014 cycle.

Humphrey and early enrollee Tony Brown give the Tide two five-star cornerbacks in its 2014 class. Brown is already a member of the Tide’s track and field team with Humphrey expected to join him once he arrives on campus.

Humphrey, a 6-foot-0, 180-pound cornerback, ranks as the No. 10 prospect nationally and the No. 1 cornerback, according to 247Sports.

As a senior, he helped led Hoover to a 15-0 record and the Class 6A state championship.

Humphrey is the son of former Alabama All-American running back Bobby Humphrey, who also played for the Denver Broncos and Miami Dolphins.

Humphrey’s high school coach, Josh Niblett, told ESPN he was proud of the way Humphrey handled the recruiting process.

“Now that it’s over he can take a deep breath,” Niblett told ESPN. “The thing with him is he’s handled the process unbelievably. He’s had a plan. He’s had his ducks in a row.

“He did a really good job of looking at all the aspects of the programs recruiting him. … In the end, he wanted to see what was the best fit for him and the best for his future. And obviously that choice came down to the University of Alabama.”

Humphrey joins a defensive backfield that has many holes to fill. The Tide will be without starter Deion Belue and key reserve John Fulton, both of whom graduated.

But is Humphrey an immediate impact player or will he need time to develop? 247Sports national recruiting director JC Shurburtt said it will depend on Humphrey’s work ethic and attitude.

“It’s up to Marlon Humphrey. They’ll coach him up and try to get him ready to play,” Shurburtt said. “They don’t have a problem playing their talented freshmen and he’s talented. He’s not that type of guy that you look at sometimes, like a Dre Kirkpatrick or a Dee Milliner and say, ‘That guy is playing in year one.’ You kind of have to wait and see what happens with him. If he comes in, works hard and is developed quickly, I don’t see any reason why he wouldn’t.”

Alabama’s 2014 recruiting class is ranked No. 1 by all four major recruiting services with Humphrey’s pledge strengthening the Tide’s grip on the top class.

“It was fun getting a chance to know some of these coaches from schools all around...but I’m just happy it’s all over,” Humphrey said in a Twitter post.

Marq Burnett covers University of Alabama sports for The Star. Email mburnett@annistonstar.com. On Twitter: Marq_Burmett.
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