Let it always be known that Nick Saban knows how to make an entrance.
The Alabama coach took a break from preparing for a Cotton Bowl national semifinal game to do some old fashioned recruiting with some very newfangled toys. Or at least one very expensive newfangled toy: A Bell Helicopter 206 chopper.
Saban took the brief helicopter flight from Tuscaloosa to Powder Springs, Ga. on Thursday in an aforementioned Bell 206 registered to a provider from Columbia, S.C., to take in a McEachern High practice. That’s where he saw 2016 wide receiver prospect Tyler Simmons, an uncommitted senior, not to mention fellow seniors defensive tackle Julian Rochester (a Georgia commit) and Tremayne Anchrum (a Clemson commit), an offensive tackle prospect. and tight end Christian Roberson (a Mississippi State commit). While all four players are legitimate SEC talents, Saban was likely focused mostly on Simmons, who has yet to indicate in earnest which college he may be leaning toward.
Most onlookers and experts have places an emphasis on Simmons’ roots in Georgia and pointed to the Bulldogs, yet on Thursday Simmons was clearly taken with Saban and the helicopter he flew in on. Just check out that copter-front selfie:
Will one practice visit be enough to sway Simmons? Who knows. If ever there was one such visit, it would probably be a helicopter visit by Nick Saban.