Losing Will Muschamp didn't cause it to happen. Losing Duane Akina didn't cause it to happen. Losingsure as heck didn't make it happen. But losing did. Of the 23 Texas commits when the coaching changes began, only OL Christian Westerman has de-committed, making his decision public on Friday morning in a press conference at his high school in Chandler, Arizona.
Of course, the de-commitment was expected ever since his father sent out an email on Wednesday night notifying the press of "breaking news" in his son's recruitment. Friday morning only confirmed the inevitable.
Westerman's comments about his decision after the jump...
Here's what Westerman had to say about his decision:
I have spent countless hours and months considering all the things that matter to me for my college future and football future and Auburn just came out on top in the end. It was about the Auburn coaches, especially coach [Gene] Chizick and my offensive line coach, Jeff Grimes, the Auburn family and the fact that there was a relationship that has now been solidified for many months now. In the end it was about people, trust, love and family.
Strange was a word used in the post earlier and it's an apt word again when considering that Westerman mentioned his relaitonship with Grimes as one built over "many months now," time when he was supposedly a solid Texas commit and there was no public mention of building a relationship with another coach.
Westerman on what happened with Texas:
Even after a down year where the Horns went 5-7, I still had a relationship and trusted the coaches and the direction of the program. After the season, my position coach left the program and then [six] other coaches left. It just all changed. There was no more relationship to hang my hat on, and my position coach is [who] I will spend about 90 percent of my time [with]. It was just too little too late. Auburn had it all and I was very close to my position coach there over the last 8-10 months.
So now there is a time frame for just how long Westerman had been flirting with Auburn: 8-10 months, basically as long as he had been "committed" to Texas.
Westerman on his connections to the Auburn area:
My mom's side of the family is from the Auburn area. I have always liked the team and my grandparents live about 30 miles from the school. I have spent a lot of time with my family there and many summers on Lake Martin. It is comfortable and familiar. I also have other family in Alabama on my mom's side and also Georgia, Florida and all across SEC country.
Westerman on his relationships with other Auburn commits:
I have also forged some very strong relationships with other players that I met and spend time with at the Under Armor All America game. Guys like Reese Dismukes, Thomas O'Reilly and Kiehl Frazier and guys I became close to at lightning speed. We are all in and now part of War Eagle nation. We have big plans to get Auburn back to the national championship during our career there.
Westerman on whether or not the national championship win by Auburn influenced him:
The national championship was just icing on the cake. I have never been a fair weathered fan and I have been building a relationship with Auburn for about eight months now. Winning the national championship this year certainly is exciting for the program but I did not play on that team. It is my desire to get back there in my time there and that will be one of my goals along with winning the SEC and going to a bowl game each and every year.
I am excited and blessed to move forward with my commitment to this great program and the Auburn family. In the end I am following my faith, my heart and my family.
Nothing else is there to say, really, except best of luck to Westerman and his family on their decision.