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Justin Delaine commits to Auburn

Former Sumter County standout defensive end Justin Delaine has two new schools. Monday, the 6-foot-5-inch, 230-pound senior had his first day in Patriots’ red, white and blue after his mother relocated to Linden. Hours later, he committed to continue his football career on The Plains at Auburn University.

“I was waiting on it for the longest,” Delaine said of the offer from Auburn. “I thought it wasn’t going to come. And when it came, it was one of the happiest days of my high school football career.”

“they’re getting a kid that’s got a lot of upside,” Linden head coach Andro Williams said of the signing. “He hasn’t scraped the surface of where he can be from what I’ve seen.”

Delaine reportedly accepted the Auburn offer the same day he received it, passing up scholarship opportunities from Mississippi State, South Alabama, Southern Miss and Troy.

“They have the best program I’ve seen,” Delaine said of the Auburn program. The Tigers informed Delaine they intend to keep him at his natural position, a fact that was key in his decision.

“It was very important because that is mainly what I like,” Delaine said. “I am glad they were able to stick me at the position I am most efficient at.”

Delaine did not play his freshman season but spent the last two years as a member of the Sumter County football team. After deciding where he will play next season, Delaine was afforded his first opportunity to get to know his team this season.

“They are hard working,” Delaine said of his Patriot teammates. “They believe in team. They don’t see any problem with instruction.”

Monday also marked the first official day Delaine has been under the tutelage of Williams.

“He’s definitely a humble kid,” Williams said. “He means well and expects to do what he’s got to do as an individual. He’s a special kid that comes from a special, unique situation.”

As a Patriot, Delaine, who bench presses 315 pounds and turned in a 4.58 time in the 40-yard dash, should provide more balance and flexibility to the defensive line.

“I think I can help put a little more experience on the defensive line,” Delaine, who strives to top his 2008 sack total of 37, said. “