On Wednesday, Auburn’s football team completed the transfer portal version of the “Double Eagle.” A loss for Alabama was Auburn’s gain.
Former Alabama cornerback Antonio Kite signed on to play for Auburn after spending two seasons in Alabama. Kite is one of more than 20 players that have announced intentions to transfer out of Alabama after the retirement of head coach Nick Saban last week.
Kite played in seven games for Alabama during the 2023 season, mostly contributing on special teams, but was in line for an increased role heading into 2024.
The former four-star recruit out of Anniston High School in Calhoun County will have three years of eligibility left.
Kite is the second player to have played at Alabama and then transfer to the plains. The first is running back Corey Grant, the Opelika native who became an integral part of Auburn’s 2013 SEC championship winning offense. Kite joins former Texas safety Jerin Thompson as secondary help coming out of the transfer portal this cycle. Defensive backs Austin Ausberry, Marquise Gilbert, Tony Hunley Jr. and Donovan Kaufman have all transferred out.
Fast-riser, basketball star at Anniston
Antonio Kite the football recruit didn’t exist before Kite’s junior season at Anniston High School. Before Kite joined the football team in his junior season, Antonio Kite was just a basketball star.
Kite was a Class 4A All-State performer after his sophomore season on the hardwood before he ever stepped on the football field as a player.
But, once he did, Kite soared.
In his first year of high school football, Kite was good enough to receive all-state honors on the football field too. Kite flew up the rankings as game film began getting out of his football pursuits.
Kite was named a four-star recruit and was recruited at Alabama by then-safeties coach Charles Kelly. Kelly, is, of course, now the co-defensive coordinator at Auburn.
As a football senior, Kite tallied 71 tackles and a pair of interceptions while also piling up 1,217 receiving yards and 15 touchdowns while playing both ways for the Anniston High Bulldogs. He was named all-state in Class 4A again in football as a senior, but his basketball play never slacked either. After another all-state nod as a junior, Kite was named the 2020 Class 4A basketball player of the year as voted by the Alabama Sports Writers Association. The point guard averaged 20.6 points, 6-9 rebounds and 8.8 assists per game. In high school, Kite also received a scholarship offer from Alabama, as well as Mississippi State, Alabama State and UAB.
Auburn hoops fans with thoughts of a potential dual-sport add in Kite shouldn’t let those thoughts linger, however. Kite likely won’t be suiting up on Bruce Pearl’s bench anytime soon.
In a recent interview with his hometown paper, The Anniston Star, Kite stated “I don’t play basketball anymore.”
Still, the in-state cornerback who is still fairly new to football should get a chance to compete for a spot in the Tigers’ secondary this fall.