March 16, 2011

Elite OT adds UA to long list of offers

With more than 35 scholarship offers already, D.J. Humphries doesn't get too excited when a new school offers him, but when Alabama called last Friday to extend an offer, it caught his attention.

"I called Coach (Chris) Rumph and talked to him for a little bit, and then he put Coach (Nick) Saban on the phone and Coach Saban gave me the offer," Humphries said. "It made me feel great. He's one of the greatest college football coaches in history.

"Alabama wins. They put numbers up. They're in the SEC, and I'm an SEC guy. I want to be in the SEC."

Humphries, a 6-foot-5, 265-pound junior offensive tackle from Charlotte, N.C., has received an offer from nearly every ACC and SEC school. Early in the process, he likes Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Florida, Georgia, Notre Dame, South Carolina and Tennessee.

"Whether or not they're going to win is the major thing that I'm looking for and also coaching stability, being at a place with players that I can connect with and just the town," Humphries said. "I want to be at a place where I won't be trying to get off campus all the time, where I can just chill on campus."

Rumph, UA's defensive line coach, knows the Carolina area well from his days at Clemson and has been Humphries' main recruiter for Alabama. Rumph and the rest of the Crimson Tide staff is one of the main reasons Humphries likes UA.

"I like the Alabama coaching staff," Humphries said. "Coach Rumph and I talked twice this past weekend. I like Coach Saban. He's a real straight-forward guy. You know what you're going to get out of him. You're going to get hard-nosed coaching, and I don't want a push-over coach."

Humphries has not been to Tuscaloosa yet, but plans to schedule a trip at some point this spring. He's expected to be in Gainesville this weekend for Florida's junior day.

After a standout junior season where Humphries had more than 120 pancake blocks, he is widely considered as one of the top offensive tackles in the country. He helped lead Mallard Creek High School to a 13-1 record.

"I feel like pass blocking is one of my strengths, but I want to get it perfected," Humphries said "Everybody says you never can perfect at that, but I want to get it as close as possible. I've improved a lot on my run blocking this year. I had over 120 pancakes. That was the main thing I wanted to work on going into this past season."

Humphries plans on announcing his decision at January's U.S. Army All-American Bowl.

Reach Greg Ostendorf at [email protected]

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