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Does another top QB's verbal commitment to Alabama mean Arch Manning won't sign with the Crimson Tide?

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How does Eli Holstein’s verbal commitment to Alabama impact the chase for Arch Manning?

Holstein said Tuesday that he would be signing with Alabama later this year. Holstein is a four-star recruit according to Rivals and the No. 5 pro-style quarterback in the class of 2023. He was previously committed to Texas A&M and Jimbo Fisher until he decommitted in March.

The 2023 class is, of course, the same recruiting class that includes Manning. The nephew of Peyton and Eli is a five-star recruit and the top recruit in the country. His recruitment has been one of the most high-profile in years as he’s seen as a potential No. 1 NFL draft pick in 2026.

Alabama has been one of Manning’s biggest recruiters and Nick Saban’s team had been seen as a potential landing spot for the New Orleans native. However, Holstein’s commitment could mean that Alabama is out of the running for Manning and that his decision is down to other teams.

The two biggest contenders for Manning’s services outside of Alabama are both coached by former Saban assistants. If Alabama is out of the Manning sweepstakes — it’s uncommon for two top-tier quarterbacks in the same class to sign with the same school — then Georgia and Texas are seen as the frontrunners. Texas and coach Steve Sarkisian have been heavily recruiting Manning even after landing transfer Quinn Ewers from Ohio State. Manning is set to officially visit Texas in June.

Manning is also set to officially visit Alabama after he goes to visit Kirby Smart and Georgia and before he goes to Austin. If Manning keeps the Alabama visit on his calendar, then the Crimson Tide may still be in the running. If he doesn’t, then we have a pretty good sign that Holstein’s commitment means he’ll be the top QB in Alabama’s recruiting class. With Manning’s visits scheduled to happen in the coming weeks, we’ll likely get a better idea of Manning’s 2023 options soon even if his decision won’t happen until the fall.

ATHENS, GA - SEPTEMBER 18: Arch Manning from Isidore Newman in New Orleans, LA on a visit to Georgia before the college football game between the South Carolina Gamecocks and Georgia Bulldogs on September 18, 2021 at Sanford Stadium in Athens, GA. (Photo by John Adams/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Arch Manning is the No. 1 recruit in the class of 2023. (Photo by John Adams/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)