football Edit

Alabama JuCo WR target Malik Benson excited for official visit

Malik Benson, wide receiver from Hutchinson Community College in Kansas, received attention from various programs during his sophomore and junior season in high school. The Lansing, Kansas, native understood before his senior year he needed to attend junior college in order to qualify academically for a higher institution.

Benson enrolled at Hutchinson where he shined during his freshman season. He recorded 43 receptions for 1,229 yards and 11 touchdowns. He broke the NJCAA single season record for yards per-reception (28.6).

He has also maintained focus in the classroom and on track to graduate in December. He is still deciding between Business and Sports Management for his future, but he is leaning to the latter.

Benson is ready for an exciting, busy summer full of official visits in June before announcing his college destination. He visited Oregon for the first time this past weekend. It was his first official visit. He will visit LSU (June 3-5), Tennessee (June 10-12), Alabama (June 15-17) and Georgia (June 17-19).

"Those are the five schools that really caught my attention," Benson told BamaInsider. "I have built a good relationship with coaches from those schools. I plan on committing sometime in July so that I can focus on graduating and my final season at Hutchinson.

"One thing that is important to me when I go on these visits is the interactive the coaches have with me and my family. I am always going to listen to my mom. She raised me to be the man I am today. I want to have a gut feeling when I step on campus that that's the place where I want to be."

The early scholarship offers arrived from schools like Texas Tech, Missouri, South Dakota, UAB and South Alabama. He received an offer from Georgia which changed the amount of daily attention. Benson said he started receiving three, four offers a day and on March 2 received his offer from the University of Alabama.

"I talked to Alabama few days before I received the official offer," he said. "They said they were going to evaluate my film. They didn't want to just offer me just to offer. They wanted to take the time to evaluate me and wanted the offer to mean something.

"That meant a lot to me. I am glad they took the time to really look at my film before offering me. I knew if they offered me then it was meant to be."

The 6-foot-1, 190-pound receiver is recruited by Alabama defensive line coach, Freddie Roach. Alabama wide receivers coach Holmon Wiggins visited Hutchinson in late April (when he also spotted a late addition to the Tide's 2022 class in tight end Miles Kitselman).

Benson will visit Tuscaloosa, along with his family, for the first time in three weeks. He visited Gulf Shores during his senior year in high school, but a tropical storm throughout the week didn't provide a clear view of the state.

"I really can't wait to see the campus," Benson said. "Coach Wiggins said I can be a difference maker. I know the past players they've had at my position. They want an older guy to come in next year. He said if I do what I have to do I can change my family’s life.

"One thing that sticks out to me that not a lot of other programs can say is they have produced a lot of receivers at the highest level. DeVonta Smith won the Heisman at Alabama. It's really uncommon for a receiver to win it. Why can't I do that? It's really impressive all the receivers they have put out. They always produce really good dudes."

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Order Andrew Bone's book: ‘The Road to Bama’

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