April 3, 2011

Nephew of former Tide star visits UA

Duron Carter wasn't the only recruit in Tuscaloosa this weekend. Fairhope offensive lineman Kyron Samuels, the nephew of former Crimson Tide All-American Chris Samuels, also came up for the day on Saturday to watch Alabama's scrimmage at Bryant-Denny Stadium.

"I got in a little early, so Coach (Jeff) Stoutland took me through the offensive line meetings before the (scrimmage)," Samuels said. "The offense met up with Coach (Jim) McElwain before they went out for the scrimmage.

"It was pretty cool because I got a chance to be in the meeting room and see what all goes into the preparation and the pre-game stuff."

During the scrimmage, Samuels (6-foot-2, 285 pounds) kept a close eye on the offensive line, in particular, the center position, which is where he will be playing next year and projects to play at the college level.

"I like the way D.J. Fluker and William Vlachos played," Samuels said. "Fluker was very aggressive. He had a couple pancake blocks on the second level. I just like the way Vlachos has control over the offense. You can tell he's in control, and he pretty much runs the show on the offensive line."

Samuels has always been a frequent visitor to Tuscaloosa because his uncle played for Alabama. Saturday marked the third time in the last two months he has been up to UA's campus.

"I love Tuscaloosa," Samuels said. "That's one reason why I keep coming back because I pretty much have seen everything as far as the facilities. The atmosphere around Tuscaloosa and the people there are what keep bringing me back.

"I grew up as a kid always being around it. I just fell in love with it. That's a huge reason why I like Alabama as much as I do because Tuscaloosa feels like home already."

At this point, Samuels is still waiting for a scholarship offer from Alabama. He has offers from East Carolina, FIU, South Alabama, Southern Miss UAB and Western Kentucky, but is also hearing from most of the SEC schools.

He said he is receiving the most interest from Alabama, Florida, Florida State, Mississippi State and Oregon. All five of those schools are waiting to see how Samuels makes the transition from guard to center this spring.

"The Alabama coaches pretty much told me to keep working on my snapping, and they want to see how summer camp goes," Samuels said. "They just told me to keep working."

As soon as his coach at Fairhope High School asked him to move over and play center, Samuels went to work on it immediately. He said he played the position before, but doesn't have any experience at the high school level.

"The transition is going really well," Samuels said. "I already know the offense, so making all the calls and that type of stuff won't be too hard for me to pick up on. I've been doing that from the guard spot for three years now."

Samuels wasn't sure if he would make it back for the A-Day spring game but was looking forward to participating in Alabama's camp this summer.

Reach Greg Ostendorf at [email protected]

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