Another elite defensive prospect will play his college ball in Tuscaloosa, as outside linebacker Jonathan Allen was the first recruit to sign with the two-time national champion Alabama Crimson Tide today.
Allen, a 6'3, 255-pounder from Ashburn, Va., is not just a top outside rusher in the country, but one of the best prospects overall. He had brought his final two down to Alabama and Florida, but committed to the Tide in May.
Allen was listed as an outside linebacker or defensive end by most recruiting services, which fits perfectly with Alabama's mentality: in a 3-4 set, he'll be a jack linebacker, rushing the outside edge alongside three down linemen. Alabama blog Roll Bama Roll wrote how deep the Crimson Tide will be at that position when Allen arrives on campus, but still thinks that the elite prospect will be able to work his way into the rotation. Allen cited the competition and playing among the best as reasons for choosing Alabama. It's not a worry for Nick Saban, whose team has been chock full of defensive blue chippers for a long time and will be for the foreseeable future.
Here's what Roll Bama Roll had to say in their breakdown of Bama's defensive commits:
Allen is an elite DE prospect out of Virginia that chose Alabama over Florida. Allen is pretty much unanimously regarded as a disruptive pass rusher and is one of the top edge rushers in this class. He will likely settle in at the Jack linebacker position when he gets to the Capstone. Bama is pretty much set at the Jack position this season with Hubbard, but if Allen lives up to his billing, there is a good chance he could beat out Atchison to assume the second string position by the end of the year. Requisite highlight reel.