Earl Little Jr., remains a critical piece to the Tide's DB class
Earl Little Jr., Rivals100 cornerback from American Heritage High School in Plantation, Florida, is a super talented defensive back who has listed the University of Alabama as his favorite for months. He took multiple trips to Tuscaloosa in the summer and will return for an official visit on November 5.
Little is also coached by Pat Surtain, the father of Pat ll who was an All-American at Alabama and first round draft pick (2021) by the Denver Broncos. There are many reasons why Little has high interest in the defending national champions, but he also remains uncommitted. He took an official visit to Florida State and will visit Oregon on November 27.
Little cancelled plans for a mid-season visit to LSU. He still might visit the Tigers, but it will come after the season. He took an official visit to USC in June. The Trojans fired Clay Helton earlier this season. Little does not expect to return to Los Angeles for another visit.
It's clear Alabama is the favorite at this time. Other contenders include Florida State, LSU, Oregon and USC. Great relationships always play a big role in the recruiting process.
"They are still at the top," Little said about Alabama on Wednesday. "It's because of my relationship with Coach Saban and Coach Valai. Those are the two guys I would be with the majority of my time on the team. Those are going to be the guys coaching me.
"I have been building a very tight relationship with them for the last several months. I have been talking to Coach Saban since I was a freshman. It's just the relationship I have with them and the way they produce great players at my position."
The NFL is stockpiled with former Alabama stars especially at the DB position which includes players like Trevon Diggs (interception leader), Patrick Surtain II, Marlon Humphrey, Minkah Fitzpatrick, Eddie Jackson and many others. Little takes notice of what the former Tide DBs are doing in the league.
"Those guys have been balling out," he said. "I grew up with Pat ever since I was a little kid. It's been great watching him especially and just seeing him ball out there. He was taught by Coach Saban. He worked with him every day.
"Trevon Diggs is one of the best, if not the best defensive back in the NFL right now. I can see myself playing a similar type of role. The way those guys are playing in the NFL also plays a key role in my decision. You go to Alabama and you learn from the best. You are going to be coached by the best every day."
The No. 10 cornerback keeps in touch with Alabama each week. He talks with defensive backs coach Jay Valai every other day and in regular contact with Coach Saban. Coach Valai and Robert Gillespie (area recruiter) attended Little's game a few weeks ago.
"They came down to our game against St. Thomas (Aquinas)," Little said. "It was exciting. I was juiced-up to have those guys at my game. I have been keeping in touch with those guys every other day. I mainly talk to Coach Valai.
"He just says he wants me to come in and compete for a starting job. They talk to me about corner, but I can also play safety or star. I can move around. I am very versatile. I can play really anywhere. I talked to Coach Saban before our last game, so about six days ago.
"He basically just says the same thing. He thinks I can be a great addition to the defensive backfield. He thinks I can really help them out. He talks about how to carry yourself on-and-off the field. He tells me what they plan on running in the game plan. He also always asks about my family."
Little was disappointed to see the Tide fall to Texas A&M in College Station this past weekend. He mentioned it was a "tough loss and now will have have to face a little adversity", but he expects Alabama to bounce back and right the ship.
He said he "can't wait" to return Tuscaloosa in November for Alabama's home/rivalry game against LSU. There has been some thought a decision may happen shortly after the visit, but Little insists he will likely wait until the early signing period in December or the All-American Bowl on January 8, Marvin Jones Jr. will join him on the official visit who is a teammate and Tide target.
American Heritage (2-3) will travel to Jensen Beach on Friday night. Little is having a fantastic senior season even though most teams have avoided throwing the ball in his direction. He believes his team still has a chance to make a run once district games begin in two weeks.