Taking Stock –
|High School||Germantown (Madison, MS)|
|247Sports Composite||0.9675 (High School)|
|Star Rating||Four Stars|
|Transfer Date||May 7, 2020|
The first former Alabama football player to join ECU since Worth Gregory in 2014, Nigel Knott is bringing with him a wealth of experience from one of the nation’s best programs, as well as natural talent that led to him being a highly-recruited defensive back out of high school.
According to his bio on Twitter, Knott was a member of two Southeastern Conference-winning Alabama teams, and won a national title with the Crimson Tide in 2017.
A highly touted recruit out of Mississippi, Knott racked up a slew of honors after logging 163 tackles between his junior and senior seasons. Knott also picked off seven passes across those two campaigns, and broke up 15 passes as a junior.
Ranked on just about every recruiting list, Knott was tabbed as the second-best play in the state of Mississippi by both ESPN and Rivals.com despite missing time with a knee injury in his final prep season.
As it turned out, Knott’s progression through the depth chart at Alabama would be slowed by a medical condition that caused him to miss the entire 2019 season after being declared medically ineligible.
In two years of action before that, Knott appeared in just 12 games, notching one special tackle in 2018 as a sophomore. With two years of eligibility remaining and a degree in hand from Alabama, Knott decided to enter the transfer portal not long after being cleared to resume football activities.
On Saturday, Knott wrote on Twitter that he had been cleared to begin practicing and working out with the Pirates and eluded to heart problems that had kept him sidelined since 2018.
Now healthy, Knott is immediately eligible to begin carving out his role with the Pirates. For a team that lost starting cornerback Colby Gore and safety Daniel Charles after the 2019 season, Knott should be able to step in and provide a noticeable upgrade.
The Pirates have invested heavily in their defense during this recruiting cycle in an attempt to replace the key losses of Kendall Futrell, Alex Turner, the aforementioned Gore and others, with Knott being one of the crown jewels for ECU this year.
Knott represents one of six transfers from Power 5 schools that Mike Houston has brought to Greenville in 2020 alone. Overall, seven transfers were signed during the off-season, with six projecting to be eligible for the 2020 season.
With Knott perhaps the early favorite to win a starting corner job, the combination of him and preseason All-American Athletic Conference selection Ja’Quan McMillian on the back-end should work wonders in turning ECU’s defense around quickly in 2020.