This will be a three-part series in the breakdowns of recruits in the 2020 class Alabama is targeting. The recruiting groups will be broken-down by guards, wings and big men. We have finally made it to the final part: big men.
Profile: Jackson is a five-star forward rated as the No. 17 overall player and the third ranked power forward, per 247 composite rankings. Jackson is a 6’9” forward from Detroit, Michigan.
Breakdown: Jackson is an extremely athletic big man. He runs the floor well which gives him the opportunity to have many high-rising dunks in transition. He is one of the best shot blockers in the class due to his athleticism and having a good sense of timing of when to jump. He is an incredible rebounder on both the offensive and defensive ends as well. Jackson has a great motor and gives his all every game. He is growing into a more skilled player that does not have to solely rely on his athletic ability.
What Jackson would bring to Alabama: People wonder how great Donta Hall would have been in Nate Oats’ system. Jackson would show how great Donta could have been and more. Jackson would bring a big man who will run the floor, grab rebounds and protect the rim. Jackson would bring Oats a big man who will help push the pace and will get easy dunk opportunities in transition. He would also bring Alabama some highlight reel put-back slams that will bring back nostalgia of Hall. Jackson would, most importantly, fill what Alabama’s biggest hole is right now. He would bring the Tide a great rim protector. Jackson would take away all easy opportunities at the rim with his leaping ability. Jackson would be a huge addition for Alabama.
Alabama’s chances to land Jackson: I would be shocked if we landed Jackson, but with Nate Oats having ties in Detroit it could be possible. Michigan State seems to be the leader, but Jackson has said multiple times that his recruitment is wide open. New schools could get involved to try and secure Jackson. He has not cut his list to this point.
Profile: Brakefield is a four-star forward rated as the No. 33 overall player and the fifth ranked power forward, per 247 composite rankings. Brakefield is a 6’8” forward from Huntington, West Virginia.
Breakdown: Brakefield is as smooth as they come on the offensive end. He is a very skilled lefty who can stretch the floor with his shooting ability. He also can attack closeouts and finish around the rim. Solid passer and can handle the ball for a big man. He is capable of grabbing a rebound and pushing the pace. Has the offensive ability to take over games.
What Brakefield would bring to Alabama: Brakefield would bring a big man with versatility to the offense. Brakefield can score off the catch as well as get to the rim off the dribble. He would bring Nate Oats spacing which is something he likes to see from his big guys. He is someone who can create a lot of mismatches as well. He can post up smaller defenders and blow right by bigger defenders.
Alabama’s chances to land Brakefield: I’m not sure exactly how Alabama sits with Brakefield if I am going to be 100% honest. I don’t see Alabama landing him, but until Brakefield cuts his list there is really no way to know. The staff likes his game and have been on him. Brakefield will cut his list in the coming weeks. Some schools to watch are Louisville, Michigan, Ole Miss and potentially Auburn as well.
Profile: Hall is a four-star small forward rated as the No. 43 overall player and the tenth ranked small forward, per 247 composite rankings. Hall is a 6’9” forward from Durham, North Carolina.
Breakdown: Hall is a long forward who will be able to play both forward positions at the next level. He is a passionate player who is very gifted at scoring the ball. He has good form on his perimeter shot which is continuing to get better and better. He is a very good slasher and can get to the rim at will. His long frame makes him a versatile defender who can guard multiple positions.
What Hall would bring to Alabama: I really would have included Hall in the wing breakdown had his offer come before publishing, but he fits in this breakdown as well. Hall is someone who would play the four position a lot in Nate Oats system. He would bring Coach Oats and Alabama a talented forward who can score inside and out. He has a smooth jumper that he can get off in a hurry and make defenses pay. Playing him at the four would be a huge mismatch for the opposition due to his offensive versatility. He can easily go down low on smaller opponents. If the defense tries to put a bigger defender on him, Hall can easily blow by and get in the lane. He has a good frame and he would bring defensive versatility as well. He’d be able to guard both forward positions as well as potentially protect the rim with his long arms and athletic ability. He also is someone who will be able to pull down rebounds on both sides of the ball with his size. It’s easy to see why Coach Oats pulled the trigger and gave Hall an offer even this late in his recruitment.
Alabama’s chances to land Hall: It’s expected that Nate Oats is going to be in hot pursuit over the fast-rising forward. Hall has visits set for Louisville and NC State already. Nate Oats and company can’t be counted out, but they have a ways to go after jumping into this recruitment this late in the game. This is a recruitment to keep an eye on and watch as it plays out.
Profile: Gordon is a three-star forward rated as the No. 133 overall player and the twenty-second ranked power forward, per 247 composite rankings. Gordon is a 6’8” big man from Montgomery, Alabama.
Breakdown: Gordon is a big body who has potential to be a monster offensively. He has continued to get in better shape and work on his game. He can extend out to the 3-point line and knock down jumpers. He can take smaller defenders down low and finish as well. He’s a solid passer for a big man as well. As he continues to get a more polished low post game he is showing how dominant he has the potential to be.
What Gordon would bring to Alabama: I am all in on Gordon. He has tons of potential to be a highly effective player in Coach Nate Oats’ system. He is a versatile big who can extend to the 3-point line and knock down jumpers as well as play down low. I believe the staff at Alabama could continue to help Gordon polish his low-post game and rebounding to the next level. He is a bruising player down low who has good touch. He can snatch boards and is a solid defender as well. There's still room to grow in those areas which will allow him to maximize his potential. Gordon has been getting in better shape over the last year and if he was to end up at Alabama I believe Coach Snowden would get him in the best shape he could possibly be in. He can play both the 4 and 5 offensively. I believe Gordon could be a hidden gem in the 2020 class not only for Alabama but in the country.
Alabama’s chances to land Gordon: This is probably the most realistic of the big man options and I am perfectly fine with that. I like where Alabama stands with Gordon and would not be shocked if they got him. Gordon has not officially cut his list down yet nor set an official visit with Alabama yet. He did take an unofficial visit to Alabama over the summer.