September 24, 2009

Tide leads for Jr. DE

For the Alabama Crimson Tide, perhaps no area of the team has benefited more from Nick Saban's phenomenal recruiting efforts than the defensive line. In the two seasons since Saban arrived in Tuscaloosa, Alabama's defensive front has become one of the team's great strengths and now the Tide is looking to add another dominant pass rusher in 2011 with Griffin, Ga. defensive end Xzavier Dickson. The 6-foot-3, 235-pound junior attending two of the Tide's summer camps in Tuscaloosa and came away very impressed.

"Right now I've got offers from Alabama and Auburn and I'm hearing a lot from Florida State and Florida so I'm hoping to get offers from them too pretty soon," said Dickson. "Alabama is definitely my favorite right now. They are all about intensity. Their coaches are tough and very demanding and I don't think there's anybody that can get a team more motivated for a game than the Alabama coaches. I really like the idea of having coaches that will push me to become the best player I can be and the best student I can be. I feel like I would respond well to that kind of intensity."

The Auburn Tigers have secured themselves as a close second to the Tide early on for Dickson thanks to their reputation for producing NFL-caliber defensive linemen.

"Auburn has a really great history with defensive linemen in terms of sending guys to the NFL. They play with a lot of intensity and they really build their entire defense around that line."

While Dickson is receiving plenty of early attention from college coaches, his focus remains on his high school team for the moment, which has enjoyed some early success and recognition.

"The season is going great for us so far. We played on TV last week and won 31-7 so that was a huge statement game for us. We really feel like this team is going to go deep into the playoffs and I'm really trying to take it on myself to make sure our seniors go out with their best season yet."

Dickson's strong early season performance has been a huge part of Griffin High School's success on the field and Dickson said he believes he's continuing to improve with each game.

"As an end, my strength is really the pass rush. I probably need a little more work when it comes to taking on bigger tackles but I feel like I'm really getting better as I continue to improve my technique."

While Dickson isn't focused on tackling the recruiting process until after the season has ended, he is planning on making at least two unofficial visits this fall.

"I'm planning on making it to a couple of games this fall, hopefully to see Alabama and Auburn, but I haven't made any set plans yet. I'm just going to see how my schedule works out and play it as I go. I'm not really concerned with recruiting just yet. I'm probably going to wait until after next spring when more college coaches have had a chance to see me and evaluate me before I start trying to figure out favorites and things like that."

Dickson boasts a 305-pound bench press, a 455-pound squat and a 4.83 forty time.

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