Keeping Score

South Alabama commit switches to Southern Miss

Satsuma, Ala., quarterback Reid Rials has switched his verbal commitment from South Alabama to Southern Miss, his father confirmed on Tuesday.

Rials committed to South Alabama on June 30, but began to have second thoughts about his decision with the influx of so many UAB transfers to South Alabama.

“It's one of those deals that happens once in a hundred years,” said Scott Rials, who is Reid's father and football coach at Satsuma High School. “It took us by surprise. They had a bunch of offensive guys come in and that would have put him down the depth chart.”

Reid Rials told USM coaches that he planned to switch on Saturday and made it official with a call to South Alabama head coach Joey Jones Monday night.

The 6-foot-2, 185-pound Rials threw for 1,752 yards and 10 touchdowns as a senior and he's also got a reputation as a good athlete. At USM, he will likely see the field earliest as a receiver or safety.

“He's been recruited as an athlete, maybe playing receiver or returner,” Scott Rials said. “That will give him a chance to get on the field and then in two years have a chance to slide back in there at quarterback. It's just according to how things go.”

Scott Rials credited USM offensive coordinator Chip Lindsey for keeping in touch with his son throughout the recruiting process, even after he committed to South Alabama.

When Reid Rials began to question his original decision to go to South Alabama, he gave Lindsey a call.

“(Reid) had to weigh out everything, the positives and negatives,” Scott Rials said. “Not really having as much of a relationship with the new coaches coming into South Alabama, it just seemed like everything fell together. We feel like he's going to a program on the rise.”