published Monday, February 4th, 2013

Lawson sticking with Auburn

Online Wednesday:

Go to www.timesfreepress.com throughout National Signing Day for real-time updates on who's signed where. Sports editor Jay Greeson will be tracking how Georgia, Tennessee and UTC fare in the recruiting wars, as well as the rest of the SEC. We'll also be tracking where local prep players are signing to play college football.

Defensive end Carl Lawson reaffirmed his commitment to Auburn on Sunday, giving the Tigers their most high-profile recruit in years.

The 6-foot-2, 253-pounder from the Atlanta suburb of Alpharetta is rated by Rivals.com as the nation's No. 1 weakside defensive end and No. 4 overall prospect. He had committed to Auburn and former coach Gene Chizik last March but took visits last month to Clemson and Tennessee.

Lawson visited Auburn this weekend, and his father made a solo visit to Auburn last weekend.

"This will successfully end my recruitment," Lawson posted on Twitter. "I am an Auburn Tiger. No questions will be answered. No calls will be accepted.

"I haven't felt this light on my feet In a while. The weight of the world is off my shoulders."

Lawson, who had 42 combined sacks in his junior and senior seasons, would become the first Rivals.com top-10 prospect to sign with the Tigers since the recruiting service began its rankings in 2002. Tailback Michael Dyer was the No. 11 prospect in the 2010 class and was the Offensive MVP of Auburn's BCS championship victory over Oregon several months later, but he played just two seasons for the Tigers before being dismissed from the program.

Gus Malzahn is compiling one of the better classes for a first-year Southeastern Conference coach. As of Sunday evening, Auburn's 19 commitments were ranked 13th by Rivals.com and 15th by ESPN.

Another top-flight prospect, linebacker Reuben Foster, is expected to announce tonight among Auburn, Alabama and Georgia. The 6-2, 228-pounder from Auburn High School reportedly left his visit to Auburn on Saturday and ventured to Tuscaloosa.

Rivals.com rates Foster as the nation's No. 1 inside linebacker and No. 13 overall prospect.

about David Paschall...

David Paschall is a sports writer for the Times Free Press. He started at the Chattanooga Free Press in 1990 and was part of the Times Free Press when the paper started in 1999. David covers University of Georgia football, as well as SEC football recruiting, SEC basketball, Chattanooga Lookouts baseball and other sports stories. He is a Chattanooga native and graduate of the Baylor School and Auburn University. David has received numerous honors for ...

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