AUBURN – Gus Malzahn’s staff missed out on the top player out of Auburn High School for the second straight year as Rashaan Evans chose to sign with Alabama on Wednesday.
Evans had visited Auburn more than 20 times by his own count but chose to join the Crimson Tide and former high school teammate Reuben Foster.
Malzahn was asked about how it felt to come so close on a player who the staff invested so much time in.
“You recruit guys year-round, but we are very excited about the guys we have,” he said. “We couldn’t be happier. Like I said earlier, we’ve got a lot of outstanding guys that can help us win a lot of games. The future is very bright.”
Evans’ choice made for the only drama of the day, especially after Auburn’s bio page for Evans was discovered on the school’s website, though it was not actually published. Recruiting analysts called landing the local product “critical” to perception, particularly in state.
Malzahn would not comment on whether he’s concerned about the local perception after missing out on an Auburn High player again.
“We focus on the guys that are here,” Malzahn said. “We got one of the best classes in college football, not only talent-wise but everything else that goes with it. We’re coming off a year where we came up 13 seconds short of winning the national championship. We’ve got a lot of guys coming back and when you add that to the group coming in, the future is very bright and we are going to win a lot of games.”