Hokies Recruiting: Lawrence Cager Decision Preview and Prediction

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Jan 1, 2015; New Orleans, LA, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin (left) and head coach Nick Saban watch their team during warmups before the 2015 Sugar Bowl against the Ohio State Buckeyes at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Crystal LoGiudice-USA TODAY Sports

Favorite: Alabama

The Alabama Crimson Tide have slowly but steadily climbed up the leaderboard, and are now emerging as the favorite ahead of Cager’s announcement. The Crimson Tide might have lost the Sugar Bowl, but have a lot of recruiting momentum with the commitments of Kendall Sheffield and Daron Payne.

The Crimson Tide have made a big push for Cager led by ace recruiter Lance Thompson, and some analysts for 24/7 Sports have suggested that something has changed to make Alabama the big favorite. We are not exactly sure what that may be but that is enough to make us think that Alabama is the favorite for Cager.

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Amari Cooper will almost certainly be headed to the NFL, and the Crimson Tide will likely be willing to give Cager the chance to earn some early playing time. The tremendous success of Cooper this past season also has to be big boost to recruits believing that Alabama can develop NFL wide receivers.

Even with the Sugar Bowl loss, there is still no doubt that Alabama has been the best program in college football over the last 6 seasons with the Crimson Tide having national titles in three of those seasons. The appeal of Alabama as a national brand is still powerful and one loss will not affect that.

The Crimson Tide are still in one of the deepest conferences in college football with the SEC still likely to produce the most draft picks this spring though that still remains to be seen. The chance to make it to the pros is something every player wants and Alabama has done a very good job of that.

The only thing that hurts Alabama is there lack of consistency with producing NFL wide receivers outside of Julio Jones and Amari Cooper. Alabama is the favorite but it isn’t a sure thing he joins the Crimson Tide.

Chance: 45%

Next: Who will Cager choose?