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Auburn misses on 5-star linebacker Ben Davis, Alabama legacy follows in father’s footsteps

Michael Niziolek


Linebacker Ben Davis poses for a photo after receiving his Under Armour All America jersey. (Courtesy)
Linebacker Ben Davis poses for a photo after receiving his Under Armour All America jersey. (Courtesy)

Ben Davis had an official visit the weekend before national signing day to the plains, but it wasn’t enough to sway the top rated linebacker.

The 6-foot-3, 240-pound senior out of Gordo High School in Alabama stuck to his roots by picking Alabama Wednesday morning.

Davis’ father Wayne Davis is Alabama’s all-time tackling leader.

His decision aired on ESPNU at 10 a.m. with Davis flanked by the school's cheerleaders, surrounded by family and five hats in front of him. The band played Alabama's fight song after Davis made the announcement and his mother flashed a pair of Rolling Tide gloves.

The No. 1 player in the Alabama spoke to network anchor Joe Tessitore following his announcement.

"I had to go with my heart," Davis said. "Alabama is a close to home school. I had to go with my heart you know, my gut."

Auburn wasn’t the only team to lose out on Davis’ services. The 5-star prospect went into national signing day with a top five that also included Georgia, LSU and Notre Dame.

"I just woke up this morning and said I was going to go with what I first wake up with," Davis said of when he made the decision.

The Tigers are thin at the linebacker position with only Tre Threat, one of the team’s nine early enrollees, the only player at the position in the 2016 Class.

Auburn lost Kris Frost, Justin Garrett and Cassanova McKinzy to graduation at the end of the season. They were three of the most experienced defenders on the Tigers’ roster. 

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Michael Niziolek covers Auburn football for the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer. Email him at mniziolek@ledger-enquirer.com or follow him on Twitter, Facebook or Google+