The biggest surprise of the weekend’s dual Alabama commitment of four-star Bob Jones offensive tackle Kendall Randolph and three-star James Clemens cornerback Kyriq McDonald wasn’t which school they picked. The Alabama-raised duo was long expected to land with the home state Crimson Tide. It wasn’t even necessarily that they chose to commit via one of the flashiest means possible, with a full, glossy video representation, or that they did it together. After all, both players hail from Madison, Ala.
The surprise was that the video itself wasn’t produced by Bleacher Report. It was produced by local online news outlet AL.com.
Randolph, a 6-foot-5, 290-pound lineman who was recruited by many of the nation’s biggest powers, was the bigger headliner in the video, though AL.com’s Justin King gave almost exactly equal promotion and airtime to both rising seniors. The pair eventually walk off a training field after a grueling weights and conditioning workout past an Auburn script-A cap, signifying their future destination.
The video is a nice montage, set with a solid melodramatic musical backdrop and well shot camerawork. It’s as professionally done as any of the efforts Bleacher Report studios has put forth.
It also is significant in what it represents: A local outlet elbowing its way in to the mega-media commitment game. That’s a trend worth watching in itself, as the football recruiting-media complex continues to thrive.