The recruitment of Carrollton (Texas) Hebron safety Jamal Adams is one playing out mostly behind the scenes as he offers little publicly, now entering the summer before his senior season without a top five, though he plans on releasing one soon.
Moreover, when Adams spoke with SB Nation Recruiting in April at the Dallas NFTC, he wasn't willing to offer up any list of favorites or schools standing out, but there has been some movement in his recruitment recently -- he's about to take a trip to Florida to visit the Gators, who are thought to be the favorite right now, having taken the lead in the 247Sports Crystal Ball predictions for the 6'0, 200-pounder.
Then there's also the recent surge from the Texas A&M Aggies, who were mostly an afterthought for most of the last year until Adams visited for the spring game and came away impressed, sparking a high level of confidence in the A&M staff that Adams ends up in College Station, though the staffs at Florida and Texas probably feel the same way. He's now also receiving pressure from Texas A&M commits Nick Harvey and Kyle Allen to add his name to the list of Aggie pledges, one that is already tops in the nation in the team rankings.
Of course, Adams also has strong relationships with two Texas commits -- quarterback Jerrod Heard and wide receiver Lorenzo Joe, so it's not like the A&M commits are the only ones working on Adams.
What could ultimately play the largest role in his decision, though? The consensus five-star prospect with offers from all over the country said in April that academics and depth chart will be the most important factors in his decision. Skipping over the former and looking at the latter may provide some perspective into where he ends up.
Assuming that Florida, Texas, and Texas A&M are indeed the leaders, a look at the depth chart for each school is potentially revealing. The Gators look to have the edge, too, as the prospective starters at safety and nickel back are all seniors next season, providing an avenue for early playing time in Gainesville for Adams. In College Station, Toney Hurd, Jr. departs after the 2013 season, so there should be one open spot. For the Longhorns, Adrian Phillips will vacate one safety spot, while nickel back Quandre Diggs could jump to the NFL.
A likely safety in college, Adams also has the coverage ability that could allow him to play nickel back or even cornerback if necessary, so he's not locked into one position, a fact further favoring Will Muschamp and his Gators.
Conventional wisdom has long held that Adams will wait to see how the Longhorns perform this season before furthering his decision-making process, but the depth chart at Florida and potential impact his looming visit could have on his recruitment have the potential to render Texas' season less meaningful as it pertains to Adams and his decision.
The Gators stole the Longhorns' defensive coordinator and coach-in-waiting two and a half years ago and now could eventually steal the top player on the Texas recruiting board if the visit makes the expected favorable impression. As for the Aggies? Well, they're just trying to win yet another head-to-head battle against their former Big 12 rival. The Longhorns, on the other hand, are trying to avoid the disaster of losing a player who was at one time thought to be close to committing to Texas.
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