On Saturday afternoon, Alabama held a football camp to further evaluate a group of prospects in search of an offer from the Crimson Tide. At that camp, the Alabama staff made the decision to extend a scholarship offer to 2017 offensive lineman Hunter Brannon, a local prospect who has held an affinity for the program since he was a youngster.
“My uncles are the Britt boys — Wesley, Taylor and Justin Britt — and they played football at the University of Alabama,” Brannon told Today’s U. “Since six or seven [years old] I’ve been going to their games, and I grew up an Alabama fan. At seven, my dream goal was to play football at the University of Alabama, and it finally happened so I’m so excited about it.”
With a family track record of playing football in Tuscaloosa, Brannon has long held Alabama in high esteem, and during his journey from high school to college the talented prospect consistently attended Alabama camps to improve his technique and show the staff what he could potentially provide for the program.
“It all started, I’ve been going to Alabama’s camp since I was eleven years old, but this camp I went there and really showed out,” Brannon said. “I came with the attitude that I just mentioned. I dominated one-on-ones and dominating all the guys. One of the offensive assistants or something, he pulled me aside and said let’s go to coach [Nick] Saban’s room.”
Meetings inside the head coach’s office are typically a good sign for highly targeted recruits, and three-star lineman Brannon was on the receiving end of some good news from the multiple National Championship-winning head coach.
“We went up there and coach Saban is sitting there. He tells me how I’m a great player, real physical and real mean. He likes that I’m real dirty. Then he said, ‘Since you started camping with us a long time ago you were 6-foot-2, 27o [pounds] and now you’re 6-foot-4, 290 [pounds]. We really love you down here and I’d like to extend an offer too.’ Then I said, ‘Yes, I’m committed and so excited to be here.’ He just kept going on saying how mean I am, how much he really likes me as a player and a person and how I handle myself outside of football. He likes my body language, how I look people in the eye and how I treat people, all that. That helped with the offer today. I’m just so blessed and so happy.”
Given his longstanding ties to the school, Brannon is approaching his future with wide eyes and excited optimism. On the field, however, the Cullman (Ala.) prospect is an angry individual committed to exercising his dominant will on his opponents. When discussing his playing style, Brannon refers to himself as a “hard ass.”
“I’m gonna punch you right in the face if you mess with me,” Brannon said. “I’m going to try to break you into a million pieces, every rep and every play. I’m not going to stop. I ain’t never had nothing stop me and nothing is going to stop me. I’ going to put the defender into the ground. I’m just a real hard-working, nitty gritty [player]. I live i the country on a far and I really like hurting defensive linemen. Every time I get underneath a block and pancake them, that’s just what I live for: hurting the other side of the ball. Real punishing and real mean.”
Although Brannon plays with unbridled aggression on the football field, the imposing lineman spoke candidly about the journey he has taken in order to earn his offer from Alabama, the culmination of a taxing process for the Alabama native.
“You don’t even understand how hard it has been to get here, but I can say I’m committed to my dream school and its unbelievable,” Brannon said.
When it comes to visiting other schools, Brannon did not dismiss the possibility but says he is going to turn the volume down in his recruitment in light of his recent commitment.
“I’m probably going to shut it down unless something crazy happens or something else happens,” Brannon said. “For right now, it’s definitely shut down.”
During the offseason, Brannon has stayed busy by working out nearly every day and focusing on his footwork, to be specific. That attention to detail with his footwork, he says, helped him earn the offer he collected from the Crimson Tide.