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June 19, 2013

Rivals250 LB names top five

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Auburn (Ala.) Rivals250 linebacker Rashaan Evans released his top five on Wednesday night.

"Georgia is one, UCLA is two, Tennessee is three, Florida State is four, and Auburn is five," Evans told AuburnSports.com.

"That last spot was between Auburn and Alabama."

The 6-foot-3, 215-pound Evans plans to visit USC, UCLA and Oregon in the next couple of weeks.

"The reason why I have Georgia one, the position they'd have me playing is solid, their campus is nice, and their coaches, we have good relationships," Evans said.

"UCLA is hitting me up a lot. They've come all the way down here to see me a bunch of times.

"Tennessee, with Coach (Tommy) Thigpen, he hits me up every other day and tries to get in contact with me. We talk all the time, just about football and life. I visited up there and have met with their coaches.

"Florida State, the thing that stood out to me is their campus and their need for linebackers. That stood out, their need for linebackers, I'd have a chance for early playing time.

"Auburn -- me going over there all the time, I feel like I'm almost already over there, I have great relationships. It's next to home, the coaching staff is showing me lots of support, even if I didn't commit to Auburn. That's why they are over Alabama."

Many might be surprised to see Auburn, the hometown college, in fifth place entering the summer. Evans can understand.

"They are right across the street, you might think they are number one. But there are other schools out there that want me just as bad as they do," said Evans.

There are multiple factors playing into Evans' decision, a decision he plans to make by the middle of his senior season. But one deciding factor stands above the rest.

"Relationships," he said. "I'm a big fan, if I'm going to a school, I want to be in sync with the coach that is coaching me. I don't want any problems with the coaches. Most teams right now, as far as depth and playing time, that's going to pan out as far as my commitment."

One intriguing school in play for Evans may be Alabama. Evans camped in Tuscaloosa earlier this month and performed very well. Evans spoke with head coach Nick Saban following the camp, and left with the feeling that the Tide were about to turn up the pressure.

"I did really good at that camp," said Evans. "I talked with Coach Saban, they wanted to see me play up instead of having my hand in the dirt. That's why they invited me to the camp, they told me I had an offer -- they said they are going to recruit me hard."

Evans visited Auburn's camp this month also, but didn't participate. He did speak with head coach Gus Malzahn.

"I talked to Malzahn right before the camp, we just sat back and talked about football, but really just personal and what I've been up to," Evans said.

Evans said he would take an official to Alabama next fall. Georgia and Auburn will also receive official visits from Evans.

Regarding Evans' upcoming visits out west, Evans admits that his top five is likely to change following the tour.

"That's my top five for now, but once I take these visits out west, things may change," said Evans.

Twitter: @JHokanson

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