For the second year in a row, Anthony Grant and the Alabama Crimson Tide basketball staff sweated it out to the very end for a top recruit.
Last year, it was four-star Trevor Lacey who signed with the Crimson Tide on the very last day of the signing period. This year, the signing period came and went, but ESPN 100 star Devonta Pollard finally signed with Alabama on Friday.
"I chose Alabama because I felt like that was the best fit for me as a player," Pollard said. "They play the style that I like to play as far as getting up and down the court, pressing, always in attack mode. That's what keeps me going and has me playing at the best that I can."
Pollard, a 6-foot-7, 200-pound phenom from neighboring Mississippi, chose the Tide over the likes of Texas, Georgetown and Missouri. He is the first and only signee to date for Alabama in the 2012 recruiting class.
As a senior, Pollard averaged 24 points, 16 rebounds and five blocked shots per game to lead Kemper County High School to the Class 3A state championship. In the title game, he recorded a triple-double with 28 points, 10 rebounds and 10 blocked shots.
Pollard, a McDonald's All-American, joins an Alabama team that reached the NCAA tournament in March and returns the bulk of its roster.
"They were already good, and if you add my talent and what I can do onto what they already can do, I believe it's going to be scary of what Alabama is going to be able to accomplish this year," Pollard said.
"I feel like we're going to be good enough to be in the Final Four for the next however many years. I'm looking forward to the challenge."
Although he signed late, Pollard is still expected to enroll at Alabama during the summer period in July and begin working out with the team.