Juco OT Leon Brown chooses the Tide

Junior college offensive tackle Leon Brown has never visited the University of Alabama, but that didn’t stop him from choosing the Crimson Tide on Sunday, giving Alabama 17 commitments for 2013.

“I just feel like they presented the best opportunity for me to develop all my skills while I’m down there,” Brown said. “It’s also the best chance for me to make it to the NFL and reach all my dreams.”

UA head coach Nick Saban was happy to welcome Brown aboard despite not having the chance to meet with him in person yet. Offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland, who has visited Brown at his school in Brooklyn, N.Y., was also excited about the new addition.

“They were happy I made that decision, and they were ready to get me down there so I can start working and also sit down and talk to them face-to-face because I’ve never been down on a visit yet,” Brown said.

He plans to take an official visit to Tuscaloosa sometime in the fall or after his season wraps up.

The 6-foot-6, 308-pound prospect said Alabama likes him as a potential left tackle. In high school, he wasn’t recruited very heavily, but he believes he has become more of an all-around player since playing junior college for the ASA Institute.

“Coming out of high school, I was more of a pass blocker,” Brown said. “All we did was pass the ball 50 times a game. Up here, they turned me into a run blocker, so now I can do both. I feel like that’s pretty good.”

Brown also had offers from Kansas and Ole Miss before making his commitment. He becomes the fourth offensive lineman to commit in this class, joining Bradley Bozeman, Andy Dodd and Grant Hill.

After another season in junior college, Brown plans to enroll early at Alabama where he will have two years to play.

“I just want to have the chance to get down there and get started early, so I can have a head start,” he said. “I’ll be down there during the spring time.”

In 2009, Alabama signed juco offensive tackle James Carpenter, who played two seasons with the Tide before moving on to the NFL where he was a first-round draft pick by the Seattle Seahawks.