Dalton Adkison has been a standout for the New Brockton Gamecocks football team over the last three years and now, his hard work has paid off as the Alabama Crimson Tide has offered the senior a preferred walk-on spot on their team.
Adkison visited Alabama on April 11 and accepted the Tide’s preferred walk-on offer. He’ll join the Alabama team at the end of May.
“We’re just really proud for him,” Justin Jones said of Adkison. “Kids can see with this opportunity that Dalton has received, that there is value with hard work.
“Dalton exemplifies what it means to work hard with his attitude and the way he works and how hard he plays.”
Jones said that Adkison is expected to start out his Alabama career at quarterback, where he played the majority of his career at New Brockton.
After National Signing Day in February, Alabama coach Nick Saban said that Alabama planned to bring in another quarterback.
“I think that we’ll probably have a quarterback join us, some kind of way between now and (fall), which I don’t think I can comment about,” Saban said after signing day.
It was believed, at the time, that quarterback would be East Carolina graduate transfer Gardner Minshew after he committed to Alabama in late February. Minshew, instead, signed with Washington State.
Alabama contacted Jones about meeting with Adkison following Spring Break.
“It happened right after Spring Break,” Jones said. “It kind of just fell into place. I got a phone call from them and it went from there.”
Alabama is expected to bring blue-chip quarterback Paul Tyson, of Hewitt-Trussville, who just happens to be the great grandson of Paul “Bear” Bryant in 2019, too, and Jones said that Alabama believes that Adkison can play at multiple positions for the Tide. Adkison was a standout at wide receiver, kick returner and safety during his time at New Brockton, along with being a starting quarterback.
Jones said that Adkison joining Alabama’s team is big ,not just for Adkison, but also for the entire New Brockton program.
“There is such a wrap around this notion that if you don’t go to a big (high) school then you won’t get looks from (bigger colleges),” Jones said. “You can throw that out the window now, because this is a kid that grew up in New Brockton and had a really good career at New Brockton.
“Now, he is getting an opportunity to do something special and have a roster spot on an SEC team. That’s special for him and it breaks that mold of what everyone tries to say about smaller schools.”
Jones said that whether a player is at a Class 7A school or a Class 1A school, colleges will find the good ones.
“If you can play, it doesn’t matter what (high) school you’re at, they will find you,” Jones said. “If you can play and you do things the right way and you perform on Friday nights, it doesn’t matter how big the (high) school is. They’ll find you, even the big boys will find you. They found Dalton.”
Jones said that he and the Alabama staff believe that other colleges will regret not having found Adkison earlier.
“(Alabama) said they’re going to make a lot of other schools mad because they missed out on this kid,” Jones said. “They’re really excited about him and getting him up there.”
One of Adkison’s biggest attributes is his speed. The 6-foot-1-inch senior is also a track star at New Brockton.
“The sky’s the limit for Dalton,” Jones said. “He’s a great athlete and he will fit right in with their mold of athletes, just because the kid can run.
“You can’t coach speed and they have lots of it up there and Dalton will fit right in.”
Jones said that he is most looking forward to seeing how Alabama strength and conditioning coach Scott Cochran can transform Adkison.
“We’re looking at a kid right now that weighs about 183 pounds and by the time he comes back to see us next year he’ll probably be around 200 pounds,” Jones said. “It will be really interesting to see his growth process physically after he gets up there.”
Along with being proud of the hard work that Adkison has put in to earn a spot with the Crimson Tide, Jones said he is proud to be able to hold Adkison up as an example of what that hard work can get all of his players.
“I get to come back to a locker room with 50 kids and tell them that the same bar they’re pushing, the same weights they’re lifting and the same program here will give them an opportunity like Dalton is getting,” Jones excitedly said. “As long as you bust your tail and put the work in, you can play at an elite level, too.”