As the college football recruiting world officially opens back up June 1, droves of prospects are making the month a one-stop shop for college commitment and decision-making.
Lanett (Ala.) two-way standout Caden Story, who patrols the defensive front while aiding the Panthers at multiple spots offensively, is now among them. Three official visits are to be taken before the 4th of July.
"Auburn, Texas A&M and Central Florida," he told SI All-American. "UCF is June 11-13, Auburn June 18-20 and Texas A&M is the 24-26 of June."
The in-state Tigers and their new coaching staff have tried to hit the ground running while its old staff is in the mix as well.
"At Auburn it's Coach (Nick) Eason, Coach (Bryan) Harsin and Coach (Derek) Mason," Story said. "They're great people, they recruit hard and it's not that far away from home. I just love Auburn.
"It's just something about UCF...Coach (Gus) Malzahn, Coach (Brian) Blackman and Coach (Kenny) Ingram, the whole staff, they recruit hard."
The Auburn perspective in the family, with big brother and 2019 SI All-American Kristian Story playing in the Alabama secondary, won't see a shortage of storylines.
With both AU staffs pushing Auburn at one point, Caden has heard from Kristian on the topic.
"We've had it," Story said with a laugh. "He just always says, 'just know you'll never beat us.' But I don't really get into that."
As for Texas A&M, the trip west will play paramount in the Aggies' chances to pull one of the top prospects in Alabama outside of state lines.
"I've heard great things about the facility and this year they actually proved a lot of people wrong, people who said they didn't belong in the top 25 and things like that," he said. "They're a great school and Coach (Jimbo) Fisher, Coach (Elijah) Robinson and Coach (Dameyune) Craig are great people. They're real."
Prospects are allotted five official visits and Story could wind up taking the final two in the first two weeks of September. If it becomes the case, an SEC and ACC program figure to benefit.
"I'm going to take those on September 4 and September 11. I don't have it set, but those are the weekend to take them," he said. "It could be Florida State, for sure, and probably South Carolina. It's just a matter of seeing what happens with the first ones."
There is also a chance Story is committed before the 2021 prep season begins.
"It's a possibility I could commit on August 1, but if not August 1 then for sure on September 17," he said. "August 1 is the day my cousin, he's my brother really, but he died on that day. His birthday is September 17.
"He didn't have the chance to go to college, so with me having the chance to go, I just want to honor him and do it just for him."
Jaquarius 'Quae' Houston was a two-sport star at Lanett, having won four state championships between football and basketball. He passed away in August 2020.
In 2020, Story registered 66 tackles, including 21 for loss and 18 sacks defensively. On offense, he helped Lanett get to double-digit wins for the fifth straight season. College programs are open to him contributing on either side of the ball.
"It depends on what school and what I want to play between tight end and defensive end," he said. "I like having the ball, but I like sacking people, also. I'm open to whatever."
Story reports good health ahead of the spring football season.
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