Tide lands commitment from Ga. OL

When Georgia offensive lineman Andy Dodd said he was close to a decision, he wasn’t lying. Dodd, who visited the University of Alabama over the weekend, committed to the Crimson Tide coaching staff late Sunday night and made it official on Monday.

“It’s been in my head for a couple of weeks, but I just really wanted to take my time and make sure,” Dodd said. “I told the staff last night. I talked to them about it before, but it wasn’t really a serious situation then. Last night was the first time I told them I wanted to commit.”

Ever since Alabama offered Dodd a scholarship in February, the Tide has been at or near the top of his list because of the winning tradition and continuity within the program. He ultimately chose UA over Georgia Tech and LSU among others.

“Alabama knows what they’re doing,” Dodd said. “It’s already a set program. They win. Not many programs can sit there and say that they’re going to consistently be in the running to win a national championship.”

At 6-foot-4, 325 pounds, Dodd figures to address Alabama’s need on the offensive line for 2013. He joins in-state linemen Bradley Bozeman and Grant Hill, who have both already committed to the Tide in this class.

Dodd actually played tight end the last two years for Pepperell High School, but his head coach Jeff Shiflett plans to move him inside to play left tackle this season. Shiflett believes he’s versatile enough to play any spot on the offensive line.

“He could probably play any of the five if needed,” Shiflett said. “He won’t play center for us. He’ll play tackle, but he’s worked some center in some drills with us, and I think our guys feel that he could be that at the next level if that’s what he needed. I would anticipate him starting at an inside position.”

After choosing Alabama, Dodd has now become the second player from his high school in the last two years to pick the Crimson Tide. He joins former teammate Dakota Ball, a defensive lineman who signed with UA in the 2012 recruiting class.

Not surprisingly, Ball played a major role in Dodd’s decision.

“Back when Alabama first offered me and when my recruiting first started, we talked about it,” Dodd said. “I asked him questions about why he loved it so much. I really began to understand him, and I saw what he meant when I visited.

“That will be awesome to play with a high school teammate.”

Although the two future Alabama players hail from the state of Georgia, there’s a large contingent of Tide fans in the area who are excited to see the duo one day play in Bryant-Denny Stadium.

“It’s two guys that, they’re going to be good players at the next level,” Shiflett said. “They’ve worked hard. We’re excited about seeing them mature and seeing what they can do at the next level at a great program like Alabama’s.”