You never forget your first.
For Isaiah Hastings, the initial official visit of the college football recruiting process was long overdue. The Canadian defensive lineman, playing in 2021 at Clearwater (Florida) Academy International, considered official summer visits, but passed. He then had one scheduled for Oregon in early October, but it was canceled due to strikes within the airline industry.
Alabama hosted the 6’4 “, 295-pound prospect over the weekend and the multi-day stay in Tuscaloosa was pretty good for both parties. Crimson Tide had a big home win over Tennessee and Hastings has a new leader in their ranks. recruitment.
“They are probably number one right now,” he said. Illustrated Sports. “He is the only referee I have taken on at the moment and I will probably take others to see how he is doing. They have shown a lot of love, they are the best team in the country and they want to be the best.”
“If you go to Alabama, you are literally playing for a dynasty and the greatest coach of all time.”
Of course, the man in the cloak at UA has plenty of proof of the process. Between academic performances, tours, t-shirt adjustments and the game itself, Nick Saban was a constant on the visit.
Time with the head coach wasn’t just about winning, the NFL production and the standard on campus.
“It was great, I met with Coach Saban many times,” Hastings said. “I went to his house, I saw him before the game and after the game. At his house, I had breakfast there. In all the interviews you get the feeling that he is very serious, and he is a serious man. But at the same time, he is very easy going, a laid back coach and a laid back person at the same time.
“In person, I have a different vibe to him. He talks about football, but he also talks about life, how he grew up, how he loves cars and everything. Especially in the morning, it was about who he is, go to the lake driving boats and great stories. “
The Tuscaloosa era sensation had one of America’s most coveted defensive prospects connected with a multitude of people affiliated with the Crimson Tide program, from players to their families and beyond.
Hastings likes how it blends in with the culture of the team itself.
“What I really like about Alabama is that they are winners and they want to be the best,” he said. “That’s something I also want to be. But when you meet them it’s more of a familiar feeling. From the outside looking in it’s like, ‘oh’ Bama, they’re very serious and militant. ‘And they take the game very seriously, but it also has a family appeal. ”
Time with Saban is often memorable for prospects in town, especially those who spend time near the water like the visitor group did, but it also gives them more time to connect with potential position coaches.
Alabama defensive line coach Freddie Roach has been consistent with the last Canadian goal of the program.
“My coach Roach and I are building a great, great relationship,” he said. “I was with him a lot too, even at Coach Saban’s house riding the golf cart with him. He almost flipped over when he was driving. We were in the woods going up and down hills, on a bunch of branches and stuff. He was leaning over. a little (laughing).
“He’s very excited, it’s fun to be around.”
In the future, Hastings will most likely see other campuses before a verbal commitment is made. The list will include Oregon, which “in advance” will be able to reschedule the canceled visit.
There is no timetable for a decision between now and the Early Signing Period, which begins December 15, when senior prospects can sign a National Letter of Intent.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.