Thursday proved to be anything but a normal day at work for Charay Franklin, mother of five-star recruit Justyn Ross.
Franklin, who works at Blue Cross Blue Shield near Columbus, was visited at work by Alabama head coach Nick Saban. Saban, along with new Alabama offensive coordinator Mike Locksley, dropped by to meet with Franklin again and discuss Ross’ potential future with the Crimson Tide.
Franklin explained she had coordinated Saban’s visit about two weeks ago, which meant she was prepared to welcome the six-time national champion at her office. What she wasn’t prepared for was the pandemonium that ensued in the office.
Cameras flashed and people crowded around, eager to get a glimpse of the Alabama head coach in person.
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“It was something to see,” Franklin said. “I didn’t realize it was going to be such a big thing. I didn’t tell many people — maybe one or two — about (Saban coming). It became a whole fiasco. It was crazy.”
Franklin said Saban coming by and taking photos with her co-workers gave her a really good feeling. Franklin added she’s met with the head coaches at Auburn and Clemson, the other two finalists her son has named.
Franklin said it’s starting to sink how how big of a deal her son is on the football recruiting landscape. It’s been a wild ride for Ross and Franklin alike, and Franklin has given her son some advice on his final decision.
“I’ve just told him to go to a school that makes you feel comfortable,” Franklin said. “I understand football is a big part of it, but go somewhere where you can get your education and where it feels like home. Don’t go somewhere because other people want you to go. Go where you want to go.”
The days are winding down before Ross makes his final decision. According to his mother, Ross still hasn’t made up his mind on his destination.
“He’s still battling it out with three schools in his head and figuring out what’s best for him,” Franklin said.