Dylan Moses, 2017 athlete from University School in Baton Rouge, La., has never played a down of varsity football. He will join the high school team this spring with scholarship offers from two of the nation's premier programs. His father, XXXXX Moses, talked in-depth about the journey which hasn't even started.
"We transferred this past year so Dylan was eligible to play," said XXXX Moses. "He actually became eligible on January 30th of this year. He is running track. He will be playing on the varsity football team this year.
Moses was first noticed by his home-state school. He has been going to the camps in Baton Rouge for several years. He gave them a lot to consider last summer.
"We started going to he LSU camp when he was 10-years old," Moses said. "Every year he runs track. He'll always go to the LSU camp in June. It enhances his conditioning every year because he has meets around the same time.
"When I took him to the camp last June he had just turned 14. He ran a 4.58-40. I guess that raised his status. He was 6-foot, 200-pounds. He did a vertical jump of 33-inches and a broad jump of over 9-feet. They told us to come back for camp in July. He ran a 4.48-40. They offered him."
The University of Alabama was a little different in its meeting. Moses had never gone to a camp in Tuscaloosa. The Crimson Tide, coming off their third BCS National Championship, recruited University School standout Tim Williams who signed with Alabama in February.
"Nick Saban was on campus visiting Tim Williams one day," said Moses. "He was going through the walkway. They [Dylan and Nick Saban] almost ran in to each other. Dylan is a big fan of Mr. Saban. They spoke for a brief moment. Coach Burns, who is the area recruiter, saw him at the school one day as well when he was there.
"Coach Burns asked me to call him two Mondays ago. We had planned to go to Alabama's camp this summer. I promised Dylan I would take him there this year. They had asked us to come to camp, but then Coach Burns asked us to come up for the spring game. That turned in to why don't you come to a few spring practices. He then said why don't you come up for Junior Day. I told him I don't have a junior, mine is just in the eighth grade.
"Low and behold they offered him a scholarship. I am still trying to get my head around that one. Alabama is an awesome university. I didn't realize how big and spread out it is. They are doing so many upgrades here. We were impressed."
Moses is such a big fan of Nick Saban that he plans to change positions this year.
"He has been raised as a running back/linebacker," his father said. "He found out Nick Saban is a defensive backs coach. He wants to play in the secondary now. He is going to move to either strong safety or cornerback.
"The offer from Alabama was just so surreal. You hear about this type of stuff happening. He is only 14 though. He isn't 17 or 18. He hasn't touched a varsity football field yet. Coach Saban was talking to him like a grandfather. He was telling him he has a bright future ahead, to keep him grades up, and to have the right temperament.
"One of the things that really caught my attention was when Coach Saban said it's easy for them give him a scholarship, but that he [Dylan] has to do his part. He has a bowl with all of his rings in it. I think Dylan was mesmerized by all the rings. He liked seeing all that bling.
"Dylan's mom and I were talking to Coach Saban about his future at Alabama. He told us he has no intentions of leaving something that he has built exactly the way he wants it. It's the perfect place for him. There is no other university for him besides Alabama.
"At the end we asked Coach Saban about the 'we are going to offer' type of things he was saying. We wanted to see if he was offering Dylan or if it just meant he was going to offer Dylan in the future. He looked at us and Dylan. He said he has the potential to be the No. 1 athlete in the country. He said,' we are offering him'. The emotions were overwhelming. The five hour ride was like 30 minutes."
The entire family was impressed with the overall program Alabama has to offer college-bound athletes.
"From the academic standpoint, they took us to the academic building where the student athletes are assisted away from the fieldhouse," Moses said. "They have a tutor for each football player. As a college graduate myself, a tutor can come in pretty handy. They have former educators as tutors which only enhances everything.
"We walked in the weight room. It was unbelievable. They have a nutrient bar for the players. They have an indoor facility attached to the weight room. They have a rehabilitation center where orthopedic doctors come in and evaluate the players. The strength and conditioning coach has a lot of enthusiasm which is infectious.
"Comparing everything at Alabama to LSU we couldn't ask for anything better. LSU has a very compact campus. Alabama is more spread out. I like the way the structure of the campus is. We went over to the stadium. They have four jumbotron screens. That blew me away. I have never experienced something like that in my life. It was mind blowing."
Moses will return to Tuscaloosa this summer for his first camp experience with Alabama. He is also expected to return to LSU's camp. The rising freshman has a long way to go before he makes a college decision. A lot can happen between now and then with the class of 2017 member. For now it's the typical battle between the Crimson Tide and Tigers.
"This is how he expressed it to me, and I found it to be very logical," Moses said. "The LSU and Alabama game is the ultimate competition. There is no bigger game than the Alabama-LSU game considering the history of the two programs. Because of the atmosphere he has been introduced to with that game, and unless someone else steps up, that's where the recruiting war starts and ends."
This post was edited on 2/25 at 1:33 pm