Alabama Lands Five-Stars James Smith and Qua Russaw
Alabama just won one of the most coveted recruiting battles of the 2023 college football recruiting cycle. Five-stars James Smith and Qua Russaw were teammates at Carver High School in Montgomery, Alabama, and they made it clear that the pair would be a package deal. Today, they sealed their commitment as they announced they are heading to Alabama.
Smith and Russaw are each ranked as five stars in the 247 Sports composite rankings. Smith is ranked slightly higher as he sits at No. 18 with Russaw right behind him at No. 22. In terms of position rankings, Smith sits at No. 2 in the defensive line rankings while Russaw is No. 3 among edge rushers.
Smith will play on the interior as he sits at 6′ 3″ and 310 pounds. Smith’s size is certainly off the charts for a true freshman, but he has a solid athletic background to back it up. Overall, he has the ability to disrupt play with his size while having the ability to use his speed to cover ground in the pass or run game.
Russaw’s best skill is his ability to rush the passer. In college, he will likely rush off the edge in passing scenarios. He is quick off the edge and has shown solid technique and pass-rush moves. In addition, he will also be able to play off the line of scrimmage as needed.
Landing Smith and Russaw make Alabama’s great 2023 recruiting class even better. Alabama has a firm grip on the No. 1 spot in the 247 Sports composite team rankings. This is led by six five stars and 20 four stars. In typical Alabama fashion, the majority of these four stars are highly recruited players that almost every school in the country would love to have. In total, Alabama currently has 27 commits in its 2023 recruiting class.
Alabama landed Smith and Russaw over Georgia, Auburn, Florida, and Alabama State.