January 19, 2004

Spells talks about Auburn commitment

For Atlanta (Ga.) Mays cornerback Corey Spells, Auburn is the perfect fit.

The 6-foot, 186-pound Spells committed to the Tigers this weekend during his official visit.

"It was great," Spells said. "I felt it was the right thing to do and I wasn't going to waste anymore time. Auburn is just a great fit for me. It's close to home but far enough to get away. It's a small college town and I won't have as many distractions as a major city. Auburn was the one school that really stressed academic support. They stay on you and make sure you go to class and study."

Spells picked the Tigers over offers from Wake Forest, Wisconsin, Mississippi State and Duke. A big senior season pushed him up the recruiting charts.

"I'm so excited," he noted. "I felt like anyone that got me was going to get a good one. I wasn't anything coming out of high school but I'm going to be something going into college. Everyone can call me a sleeper but they'll know me once I get there."

Speaking of "getting there," Spells is ready to move to Auburn today.

"I can't wait," he said. "I wish I could be there right now. I graduate on May 27 and I plan on being there May 28. They are going to be tired of seeing me."

Spells was hosted on his official visit by senior cornerback Carlos Rogers. They also spent a lot of time hanging out with tailbacks Carnell Williams and Ronnie Brown and quarterback Jason Campbell along with fellow recruits - Calvin Booker, Brad Lester and Jerald Watson.

A tailback from Morgan City (La.) Central Catholic, Watson also committed to the Tigers this weekend. Booker, a high school teammate, and Lester were already committed.

"We all pretty much hung out together," Spells explained. "It was kind of funny because I didn't know Jerald was committing and I didn't tell him I was. It just ended up happening like that.

"Carlos told me they had to start a walk-on at one of the corners last year so it will be wide open," he added. "If I can come in and show what I can do, I can win the job. It will be Carlos' senior year so that will be another job opening up in a year."

The highlight of the visit for Spells came on Saturday when he went over to Jordan-Hare Stadium. He got to put on an Auburn jersey but it was raining and most of the recruits and coaches didn't go out on the field, expect for Spells and Ft. Lauderdale (Fla.) Dillard wide receiver Kelvin Chandler.

"It was raining pretty hard and me and Kelvin were the only ones that went out there," Spells said. "We did a little 1-on-1. I won, I can say that. We did it four times. He got me the first time but the next three, I got him. He's a great competitor and we went at it. He's a great receiver."

Although Spells and Watson were the only recruits to commit on the visit, several more almost pulled the trigger according to Spells.

"Kelvin wanted to but he had to go home and talk it over with his mom first," Spells noted. "I hope we get him. Willie Williams also wanted to but all the Florida guys were waiting for one of them to commit so they could all do it together. I think Leon Hart is going to commit too. He's supposed to be real good."

Spells also had the opportunity to spend a lot of time with defensive coordinator Gene Chizik and cornerback coach Phillip Lolley.

"I really like all the coaches there," he explained. "They are always honest with you. They told me what I did good and what I need to work on. They like my aggressiveness and the told me they are trying to recruit real aggressive corners."

Rated a three-star and the nation's No. 39 cornerback by Rivals.com, Spells had an incredible senior season racking up 98 tackles, 20 pass breakups, five interceptions, two sacks, four forced fumbles and nine fumble recoveries. He also tallied two safeties and returned one fumble for a touchdown.

The athletic Spells runs a 4.45 40-yard dash and sports a 305-pound bench press, 480-pound squat and 33-inch vertical leap.

Spells plans to major in business and projects as a full qualifier with a 3.0 GPA and a 1010 on the SAT.

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