With the Iron Bowl still more than a week away, the consensus four-star cornerback in the Class of 2014 fired the first of what will be many salvos before kickoff. According to three major recruiting sites — Rivals, Scout and 247Sports — the Opelika native flipped his commitment from Alabama to Auburn on Wednesday. He becomes the Tigers' 17th commitment for their 2014 class and second cornerback, joining Nick Ruffin from St. Pius X in Atlanta.
The 6-foot-0, 179-pound Roberts — who originally gave his pledge to the Crimson Tide in April — is considered one of the top 10 players in the state of Alabama regardless of position by every recruiting service. Though he has been recruited as a cornerback, it's also thought he won't have any issues moving to safety once he joins the Tigers.
Roberts is the second Opelika High product to become a member of Auburn's 2014 class, joining tight end Jakell Mitchell.
GARRETT TO REDSHIRT: After weeks of speculation, Auburn defensive coordinator Ellis Johnson finally cleared the air about linebacker Justin Garrett’s status.
Johnson confirmed Wednesday night the junior will sit out the remainder of the season after having surgery on his broken right foot a few weeks ago.
“I don’t know how many weeks it has been now,” Johnson said. “He maybe could possibly get back for a bowl game, but it’s not worth taking a year from him. He’ll get a redshirt year for this year and be back hopefully in the spring ready to roll.”
He has been injured for a vast majority of the season. Entering the fall as the starter at the “Star,” the Tigers’ hybrid linebacker/safety position, Garrett was expected to have a breakout year.
LASHLEE: WISH HE HAD SEEN BIG PLAY: Rhett Lashlee joked that Nick Marshall’s miracle touchdown pass to Ricardo Louis last Saturday transpired “exactly the way we drew it up.”
He just wished he had been able to see it all the way to the end.
“I think somebody tackled me,” Auburn’s offensive coordinator said following Wednesday’s practice.
As for the play itself, Lashlee said there wasn’t really anything special about it. He went into detail over the options on the play: There was a deep post (Louis) with a dig route over the middle (Sammie Coates) and other receivers underneath to hold the linebackers.
“Our thought was, ‘Get Ricardo in there, a fast guy that can take the top off the defense, and if you catch a cheap one, great,’” Lashlee said. “You’re thinking really that you’re clearing everything out and trying to bring Sammie around the sticks and get the first down. We had pretty good protection, but it takes a while to develop. That’s why people don’t run those plays on a regular basis much because it’s hard to protect that long. They only rushed three and our line did a good job.”