Prep football | IMG Academy's Bo Scarbrough still committed to Alabama

Running back to play in national showcase with teammate O'Connor

Orlando SentinelJanuary 2, 2014 

IMG Academy Ascenders running back Bo Scarbrough speaks to the media after accepting his Under Armour jersey for the 2014 All-American Game. PAUL VIDELA/Bradenton Herald


Bo Scarbrough has always been pretty close to the vest with his recruiting process.

The IMG Academy athlete, who transferred to the Bradenton school for his senior football season from Tuscaloosa, Ala., has been committed to Alabama since September of 2012.

He's a hometown boy and attended Tuscaloosa County High, which is just about four miles from Alabama's Bryant-Denny Stadium, so his commitment was never considered to be in question.

Then came the transfer to IMG.

The recruiting rumors started to swirl, and Scarbrough began to back away from any attention from the press.

During an unofficial visit to Florida State this season, Scarbrough didn't wear a nametag, so as not to draw attention to those who didn't know him. Most of the other recruits wore the tags on the sideline before the Seminoles game against Miami.

On Sunday, he didn't shy away from reporters at the Under Armour All-American Game practice at ESPN's Wide World of Sports.

He hasn't been nearly as pestered by the press as one might think and was in great spirits after the teams' first workouts for the all-star game, which will take place at 4 p.m. Thursday at St. Petersburg's Tropicana Field.

"It's going pretty good ... not too bad," Scarbrough said of the recruiting process. "Day by day, man ... taking it my way, leaving the outsiders on the outside."

Scarbrough, who rushed for 1,118 yards on 108 carries (10.4 average) and scored 16 touchdowns in eight games for the Ascenders, who finished 8-2 in their first season of varsity football.

He will play on Team Highlight with IMG teammate Michael O'Connor, who has committed to Penn State after completing 118 of 218 passes for 1,804 yards, 18 touchdowns and five interceptions.

Scarbrough and O'Connor will make it four Bradenton-area players to compete in the All-American Game in the past four years. Southeast defensive back Jon Dowling intercepted two passes in the 2011 game, and another Seminole defensive back, Brian Poole, picked off a pass and returned in 93 yards for a touchdown in the 2012 contest.

There has been a lot of recent speculation that Scarbrough is headed to Mississippi, but the 6-foot-2, 225-pound athlete, who will play either running back or defensive back in college, said let them all think what they want.

Scarbrough laughed at the notion that everyone knows more about where he's going to college than even himself. "They swear they do. They think they do," Scarbrough said.

And while he admits that Ole Miss coaches, as well as the Florida coaching staff, are both coming at him harder than any other school with recruiting pitches, he said he's still rolling with the Tide. Alabama is the lone official visit he has set up for next month, but said he will take other officials once he figures out a schedule.

He said he doesn't have a timetable for making any public announcement and even suggested that there won't be one necessary with his commitment still solid to Alabama.

"Maybe, probably, stick with my commitment," he said.

Time will tell.

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