ESPNU 150 Watch List safety Su’a Cravens has close to 40 scholarship offers, so it’s not that big of a deal when he picks up a new one. That wasn’t the case when the University of Alabama offered him a scholarship last month. The offer from the Crimson Tide caught his attention.
“I was real excited because I just received a scholarship from the best team in the nation,” Cravens said. “They’re the best team in the SEC, and the SEC is one of the toughest, maybe the toughest conference in college football.
“That’s really big for me. That tells me that they’re serious, and they play on a giant platform in college football. An NFL coach coaches up there, and they prepare people for the NFL. There’s nothing not to like about Alabama.”
Cravens, who grew up in Los Angeles, says he’s hearing the most from Michigan, Nebraska, UCLA, USC and Washington but that he doesn’t have any favorites at this point. So does the Alabama offer put the Tide in contention?
“Of course,” Cravens said. “They’re the top school in the nation. They’re shutting down other schools that put up 42 points a game. They’re shutting them down, holding them to field goals every game. They’re going to be in my top (group) when it all comes down.”
With a busy schedule this spring and over the summer, it’s doubtful that Cravens will be able to make any trips outside of the schools on the West Coast. He has considered Alabama a possible destination for one of his five official visits in the fall, and a trip to Tuscaloosa could go a long way for the Tide’s chances.
The 6-foot-1, 205-pound defensive back says he would have to visit a school before he could commit to play there.
“I’m looking at if they have my major, if I’m comfortable with the coaching staff, and if I’m a good fit there,” Cravens said. “It’s really going to depend on my visit because I’m going to have to see the place before I commit there.”
Over the last two years, Alabama has landed a five-star safety in each recruiting class: Ha’Sean Clinton-Dix in 2011 and Landon Collins in 2012. However, the possible competition at UA doesn’t scare Cravens. In fact, he welcomes the challenge.
“Competition does not matter. I love competition,” Cravens said. “I’ll fight for a spot. I’ve been fighting for my spot since I was a freshman in high school. I have no problem with competition. If the guy’s better than me, if he beats me out at the spot, then he deserved it. That’s just going to make me better and show me what I need to work on.”
Although they come from very different backgrounds, the chance to play with Collins, the nation’s top safety a year ago, is an intriguing thought to Cravens.
“That would be a great opportunity,” he said. “I feel like he could make me better, and I feel like I could teach him a few things if we were to go to the same school.”
Similar to what Collins went through last year, Cravens gets calls, texts, messages on Facebook and anything else you can think of on a daily basis. The process has actually ‘slowed down’ of late, giving him a chance to reflect and learn to take it all in stride.
“It’s been stressful,” Cravens said. “I have a lot of people calling me everyday to know what you’re thinking and about your recruiting. You have people everyday asking where you’re going to go, what you’re thinking about, but I’m learning to enjoy it because I know a lot of people aren’t in this situation. There’s a lot of kids out there my age that would kill to be in the situation that I’m in. I’m blessed and grateful.”