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Funderburk picks South Alabama

1:00 AM, Jun. 19, 2012 EDT

Washington receiver Dejon Funderburk issued a verbal commitment to South Alabama on Monday after a visit to the Mobile campus. / News Journal file photo

It's safe to say it was love at first sight for Washington High senior Dejon Funderburk.

While on a visit to South Alabama on Monday, the standout wide receiver gave a verbal commitment to attend the university and be a member of the Jaguars football team.

"I just committed probably about 15 minutes ago," Funderburk said Monday afternoon. "I just came from a visit. The atmosphere is great.

"It's a family atmosphere. Everybody is real friendly, it's pretty nice over there."

South Alabama is entering its second transitional season after creating its football program in 2009.

The Jaguars will become a full-fledged NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision in 2013. The Jags will compete in the Sun Belt Conference.

"The facilities are all pretty new, just like the program," Funderburk said. "They said I have a great chance to play right away."

Funderburk was a News Journal All-Area selection at athlete after catching 31 passes for 720 yards and seven touchdowns and adding 362 yards and four TDs on the ground.

He has been offered by several Southeastern Conference schools, including defending national champion Alabama. He also holds offers from Clemson, South Carolina, Kentucky and South Florida.

But a trip to South Alabama put all of those schools in the rear view mirror, as immediately Funderburk felt right at home.

"(South Alabama) just came along recently," Funderburk said. "I like that it's a new program, and it's close to home. The coaches all seemed really nice, and it just felt like a good, family atmosphere over there."

The 6-0, 175-pound standout said the Jaguars gave him the option of where he wanted to play, and his desire is to continue playing on the offensive side of the ball in college.

"Everybody else has kind of gone back and forth (on my position)," Funderburk said. "(South Alabama) pretty much asked me what side of the ball I wanted to play."

Funderburk's commitment gives the Jaguars three early commitments. He is joined by Tampa Chamberlain running back Xavier Johnson and Valdosta (Ga.) Lowndes defensive back Tiquan Lang.




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