Dre Kirkpatrick Loses Composure as Son Commits
Dre Kirkpatrick Jr., the Class of 2024 three-star prospect of the past Alabama legend who thrived under Saban, made his decision to verbally commit to the Crimson Tide.
For Saban and ‘Bama, it now means they have their first legacy commit in the era of the six-time national title winner at Tuscaloosa. At first, though, the younger Kirkpatrick appeared as if he was heading elsewhere in the Southeastern Conference.
Captured by videographer Kyle Henderson, the safety out of Gadsden City, Alabama gave off the notion he was heading to Missouri by holding up a Tigers pullover. But then, Kirkpatrick put down the pullover and removed the hat he put on…replacing it with a Crimson Tide hat and pulling out his father’s No. 21 ‘Bama jersey — leading to loud cheers from his family.
But visibly seen behind the defender? His father losing his composure and walking away — signifying the emotional proud father moment.
Older Kirkpatrick Made Similar Decision More Than a Decade ago
Before becoming the father of a future Crimson Tide defender, Kirkpatrick made his own decision back in 2009.
At the same high school where his son stars, Kirkpatrick was one of Saban’s original recruits as a U.S. Army All-American selection for the ’09 class. He announced his decision to stay in-state during the February 2009 signing period.
Ultimately, Kirkpatrick became beloved among Tide fans for helping spark the run of national titles Alabama has been on in the era of Saban.
He was a cornerback for Saban’s first national title winning team of 2010 that rolled past Texas in the Rose Bowl. Two seasons later, Kirkpatrick added one more national title.
The older Kirkpatrick, though, put together his stellar collegiate resume as a young father who became a dad before his 18th birthday. He went on to become a top 20 pick for the 2012 draft by going No. 17 to the Cincinnati Bengals.
Kirkpatrick is a unsigned free agent who was last seen with the San Francisco 49ers in 2021. He has 365 career tackles and 13 interceptions in his pro career.
Furthermore, the dad shared how he had chills walking around his alma mater with his son when they went on a recruiting trip together.
What is the Younger Kirkpatrick Bringing to Tuscaloosa?
Kirkpatrick is shorter than his dad by slightly two inches as a 6-foot, 192-pound safety.
But that gives him an ideal frame for safety with room to grow. And, his physical nature on the football field should immediately blend right in with the Tide’s defensive identity.
As his high school head coach Ali Smith told Brett Greenberg of 247Sports Friday, the younger Kirkpatrick is “an all around athlete” who plays an aggressive style and is “hitting and running all over the place.”
Kirkpatrick is now the fourth August commit for Alabama. He joins wide receiver Amari Jefferson, defensive back Peyton Woodyard and defensive back Rydarrius Morgan. Of the three other verbal commits, Woodyard and Morgan were originally committed to Georgia and Florida State, respectively.