Sandringham Dragons forward Harry Sheezel, a potential top-10 selection at November's National Draft, has spoken glowingly about a recent visit to St Kilda that included meeting a number of Saints stars.
Sheezel, who is currently completing his high school studies in the lead-up to draft season, has rocketed up draft rankings in past months and is making top-10 noise.
"I said from the start he'd start closing the gap on Will (Ashcroft) and I think he has," Cripps said.
"He has such x-factor, he's a match-winner. He's got some real bags of tricks as a forward.
"He's definitely a first-rounder."
However, Moorabbin may well be where Sheezel wants to land if his recent comments are any indication.
The 184cm forward spoke on RSN on Tuesday, recounting a visit to Saints headquarters.
"[It] was an incredible experience, to be training and spending the whole day and seeing how they go about it, especially players like Jack Steele, Max King and Rowan Marshall, they were really good to me," Sheezel said.
"[They] offered me a lot of support and showed me, I guess, the way of an AFL footballer.
"I remember saying to Chris (Liberatore, NAB League Manager) at the end of the experience that 'I wish I could just stay', I liked it so much."
Pick 9 is currently St Kilda's earliest selection this year, and after hearing about Sheezel's joyful experience at Moorabbin, Saints list manager James Gallagher may be hoping the promising forward isn't taken too close to the top come November 28.