Alabama Football: Current recruits have no memory of Tide not being great

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

July has been a great recruiting month for Alabama Football. On Friday the Crimson Tide got its 15th verbal commitment in the 2024 class. The 2025 class of commits grew to five on Saturday with the addition of one of college football’s top wide receivers, Jamie Ffrench.

Based on the On3 Industry Team Ranking the 2025 Alabama Crimson Tide group of verbal commits is No. 1. The Team Ranking from the 247Sports Composite has Alabama at No. 2 in the nation.

There is more recruiting information at the bottom of this post. First, let’s consider some perspectives from some simple numbers. The average age of recruits in the 2025 class is probably 16. What do they know about Alabama football history before Nick Saban? And what do they know about the seasons when Alabama was not an elite team? Both questions have an easy answer; either they know very little or they know nothing. When Alabama Football won the National Championship in 2009, the class of ’25 recruits were two or three years old.

They have no memories of Alabama losing to Louisiana-Monroe in 2007, or anything about that hard-fought 7-6 season. With what must be rare exception, they know nothing of Mike Shula, Joe Kines, Mike Dubose, Dennis Franchone or Mike Price.

Some of us longest of long-time Alabama football fans think of Alabama Football 1983 to 2002 (or 2006) as akin to a wandering journey in a near barren wilderness. The only reprieve in the period came from Gene Stallings in 1990 through 1996.

But recruits from the 2023, 2024, and 2025 classes don’t know about; and rightly don’t care to know about, any time when Alabama was not an elite football program.

What they know is Nick Saban is the GOAT. They know about National Championships in 2020, 2017, 2015 and are not unaware of National Championships in 2012, 2011 and 2009. They know Nick Saban has either the No. 1 class or nearing the top class in every recruiting cycle. Even more, they know about NFL success by Nick Saban’s Alabama players.

Contrary to off-base claims, Alabama’s ability to attract top talent is as strong as ever. NIL and the Transfer Portal have changed the annual roster-building process, but one thing has not changed. Every year more top talent wants to play football in Tuscaloosa than Nick Saban can make room for.

Recent Alabama Football Recruiting Buzz and Rumor

The top wide receiver in the 2025 class is wide receiver, Ryan Williams. On3 has Williams as the No. 2 recruit in the ’25 class. 247Sports has Williams at No. 3 overall.  Alabama already has a top wide receiver commit in the 2024 class in 5-Star (per 247) Perry Thompson. A recent rumor is that Williams is considering reclassifying to the 2024 class. He would need to add a few pounds before the 2024 season, but in every other way, recruiting experts don’t doubt his ability to play as a 2024 freshman.

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There is good reason for the strong optimism Alabama fans have for the potential 2024 and 2025 signing classes. They can be special.