September 25, 2011

'Outrageous' atmosphere wows Jenkins

The Alabama defense hounded Arkansas quarterback Tyler Wilson throughout Saturday's 38-14 win, but Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban wouldn't have minded having top recruit Jordan Jenkins in there as well to help with the pass rush.

At least that's what the UA coach told Jenkins before the game.

"I talked to Coach Saban for a little while, and he said some great things," Jenkins said. "He said he wished that he could have me out there doing some pass rushing that night and hoped that I came there. That made me feel pretty darn good."

Jenkins, a native of Hamilton, Ga., drove over to Tuscaloosa with his father and a couple of his teammates on Saturday. The Rivals 100 prospect had already been to five or six Alabama games, but this may have been the loudest one he had attended.

"It was a loud, loud game," Jenkins said. "It was just an outrageous atmosphere. After every first down when everybody started screaming 'Roll Tide,' it was almost at the point where it was starting to hurt your eardrum."

At Harris County High School, Jenkins plays primarily along the defensive line at defensive end, but at 6-foot-3, 245 pounds, the UA coaching staff likes him as a Jack linebacker position at the next level.

Knowing that, Jenkins watched the Crimson Tide linebacking corps closely, keeping a close eye on the Jack position.

"I saw some great things come out of (Courtney) Upshaw and (Dont'a) Hightower," Jenkins said. "I saw them squeeze down, make some plays inside and also drop back to cover a couple of receivers. They made some key impact plays."

Before the game, the Georgia native hung out with a couple of other players from his home state, including the Buford duo, Dillon Lee and Kurt Freitag, and 2013 commitment Reuben Foster from LaGrange, Ga.

"I shook hands and said hello to Dillon Lee and Kurt Freitag," Jenkins said. "I met with Reuben (Foster) because we always meet up with each other anytime we go somewhere. We had a good time together. He's always saying something, telling me to come down."

This was Jenkins' second unofficial visit of the season. He's scheduled to return to Tuscaloosa when Alabama plays LSU for his official visit, but he will get to see the Crimson Tide in action again next week when he travels to Florida for an unofficial visit.

Next week's game features his top two schools.

"I can't wait," Jenkins said. "I hope it's going to be a pretty good game. I went to it last year when it was at Alabama, and I thought it was going to be close but it was a blowout. This year it should be a lot closer because they're playing at The Swamp.

"Alabama and Florida are tied for one and two. I'm still going to wait and see how the game next week at Florida is going to be, and after that I think I'll be able to say which one's leading. After those two, it would be UGA, Auburn and Tennessee."

Jenkins plans to make a decision after his season, once he takes all of his official visits.

Reach Greg Ostendorf at greg@tidesports.com.



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