Demarcus Walker has planned to announce his decision many times since June, but the five-star Jacksonville (Fla.) Sandalwood standout was able to go through with his plans on Friday when he went before a live television audience to announce his intent to sign a letter of intent with Alabama .
Walker was considering several SEC programs before selecting the Tide, including Florida, Auburn and Tennessee. Ultimately, however, Alabama pulled ahead in the spring and never looked back.
“Trust, great academics and a great campus,” he said of what factors went into the decision before announcing.
“I will be attending the University of Alabama,” he said around 4:35 pm CST on ESPNU. “Just going up there, watching them work hard, the players they put into the league, the academics, the records they’re setting…it hit me real hard.”
“I felt like this was the best school for me.”
Walker later said that he may visit Tennessee, Florida and Auburn before the process is over.
The No. 6 DT prospect in the class recorded 14 sacks as a junior on the way to first team All-State honors, as voted by The Associated Press.
The 6-foot-4, 279-pound defender plays both defensive end and tackle in high school, but he projects as more of an interior prescience at the moment. Walker is the third D-linemen to pledge to Alabama to this point, joining Ashburn (Va.) Stone Bridge four-star Jonathan Allen and Foley (Ala.) High three-star Darius Paige.
In what could be a preview of things to come as Nick Saban and company look to fill the final six spots in the class of 2013, Walker is the first Floridian on the commitment list (Paige transferred to Foley High before his senior season). However, the Tide is still targeting plenty of Floridians – led by five-star LB Matthew Thomas and five-star RB Derrick Henry. The Yulee (Fla.) tailback has called ‘Bama his leader for quite some time, and a commitment could come in the next month or so.