Videos by OutKick
Trent Dilfer is still in just his first month as head football coach at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. That isn’t stopping him from making quite the splash— verbally, at least.
He recently took a direct shot at Auburn and Hugh Freeze over in-state recruiting and it only added to the list of unique things he has said since taking over in north Alabama. It also came with ironic timing.
Dilfer’s first day on the job came during the Blazers’ bowl game. Where most incoming head coaches typically watch their new team from a box, he was on the sideline flexing on cheerleaders.
The 50-year-old Super Bowl champion also gave a very unique speech about the state of the United States and how he plans to coach. His intentions were good, but it was a bit odd.
Since then, Dilfer has been tasked with assembling his team. Most of UAB’s players are returning, but the transfer portal allows first-year coaches to put their own mark on a roster, in addition to traditional recruiting.
After the Early Signing Period, Dilfer and the Blazers currently have the No. 98-ranked class for 2023. That is more or less where they finished in each of the last 10 years. Some years were better, some years were worse.
In this instance, Dilfer still has two months to add to his class. The state of Alabama will be a big emphasis.
We made that the focus and the priority. Recruiting locally. We’re looking for the best players in Alabama.— Dilfer during his Early Signing Day press conference.
Had he stopped there, it would have been a notable, but mostly standard statement. Dilfer did not stop there, and proceeded to take aim directly at Freeze and Auburn.
If they go to the University of Alabama, that’s awesome. But we’re going to be the next best option.— Dilfer during his Early Signing Day press conference.
Dilfer said that if recruits from Alabama do not play for Nick Saban and the Crimson Tide, playing for him at UAB will be a better option than Auburn, or any other program in the state. Bold!
Meanwhile, as Dilfer made his statement, he lost one of his own to… Auburn.
Hank Brown, a three-star recruit, played for Dilfer at Lipscomb Academy in Nashville, TN. He didn’t make a single start until this past fall, but quickly turned heads with big numbers en route to a state championship.
Brown had previously committed to play for Freeze at Liberty. When Freeze left for the Tigers, he decommitted from the Flames.
Brown was deciding between following Freeze to Auburn or following Dilfer to UAB. He chose the former. Why wouldn’t he want to play in the SEC instead of Conference USA?
Although Brown is not an in-state prospect, he chose the Tigers over the Blazers after winning a state championship with Dilfer just a few weeks prior. Meanwhile, Dilfer is saying that in-state prospects will choose his program over Auburn. Bold!