BATON ROUGE, La. — First-year LSU wide receivers coach Dameyune Craig often mentioned that he’d be deferring to some of the expertise on the Tigers’ coaching staff.
When it comes to recruiting, however, Craig seems to be a step ahead. After being introduced by coach Les Miles, he showed as much by laying out some of the blueprints he has put together in the short time since switching from Auburn to LSU.
“This is a fertile state,” he said Wednesday. “We really want to focus on our in-state guys, then work our way out. You want to take care of your backyard. This is an attractive place for recruits. It’s different for me walking into places I’ve recruited in purple and white, and it’s going to be really fun going to these different places.
“I’m excited. I’ve gotten some good feedback from recruits and coaches about coming to areas to recruit already,” added Jabbar Juluke, LSU’s new running backs coach, who was also introduced Wednesday.”
A renowned national recruiter, Craig served as Florida State’s recruiting coordinator from 2011-13 and helped the Seminoles nab the Nos. 1 and 2 classes those years. In 2013, Craig helped lure eventual national champion and Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston to Tallahassee, Fla.
Winston is a Hueytown, Ala., native, which isn’t far from where Craig grew up and maintains strong ties.
It’s now on Craig to help LSU recruit those areas, just as he did during his time at Florida State and Auburn.
“In Alabama, it’s Alabama and Auburn, and it’s up to you not to mess it up,” Craig said. “Every kid wants you to show them you really want them, so you take care of them and mold them on and off the field to be the best student-athlete you can be. You show them the attention they covet, and I’m excited to go different places and represent LSU.
“(Alabama) is a talent-rich area. I’ve had success down there because of my ties, playing high school football and winning a state championship. I try to stay within the community and look forward to going back down there and recruiting.”
Craig considers the transition from SEC West schools quite easy, too.
His recruiting pitch speaks for itself. LSU is a championship contender, he said, and that makes his work that much easier.
“This university attracts the athletes; it’s not just about the individual,” Craig said. “You have to be yourself and have a great personality fit what the head coach and athletic director want at LSU. I’m just part of that. The attraction is the university and football program, the tradition in the SEC. Anytime you walk into a school that’s in the conversation for being in the top five, you just want to be part of that and learn as much as you can about the tradition of LSU.”