Welcome to SEC Country’s daily Eye on the Tigers, a rundown of everything happening in LSU Tigers recruiting with Sam Spiegelman. Today, we discuss the Tigers’ chances of holding on to one of the crown jewels of their 2019 recruiting class. 5-star offensive lineman Kenyon Green jumped on an opportunity to commit to LSU instantly after earning an offer. Since then, several marquee programs have inserted themselves into the mix for the Texan, including Texas A&M and Alabama.
Can LSU hold on to 5-star prospect Kenyon Green?
LSU was the first to extend a scholarship offer to then-relatively unknown offensive tackle Kenyon Green last fall. The Houston-area lineman jumped at the opportunity to play for his dream school and committed to offensive line coach Jeff Grimes and the Tigers.
Since then, his recruitment has taken off.
In-state schools such as Texas, Texas A&M and Baylor are among those attempting to flip the 5-star tackle, who remains solid in his pledge to LSU. Alabama joined the fray when the Crimson Tide extended an offer to Green after he camped in Tuscaloosa last week.
Consider Alabama another team threatening LSU’s hold on Green.
“I’m still locked in with them [LSU], but I’m still looking around like every other prospect out there,” Green told SEC Country. “I’m committed to them and I want them to do great. That’s the team that I’m committed to and that my team right now. But yes, I’m still looking around at other schools and enjoying the whole process.”
Green made comments earlier in the week about putting an emphasis on how the Tigers perform this fall under first-year coach Ed Orgeron. He’ll compare LSU’s campaign in 2017 to other programs vying for his commitment.
The top-18 prospect in 2019 clarified those remarks, indicating it’s not a matter of wins and losses, but the direction the program is heading under the new coaching regime.
“I think that they’re going to be real good with Coach O,” Green said. “I think he’ll bring some old-school type of football back at LSU and I hope that they do great this year.
“It’s not about that [wins and losses] at all; it’s about the progress. It’s not just about winning. It’s about him building up the team and building the program up more. More wins are going to come if the team wants to fight for him. I want to see how the team jells together and how he can put a team together and work with them. It’s not all about winning, but it is about winning at the same time.”
Despite strong pushes from several in-state schools and now Alabama, Green has remained committed to LSU. That’s not by accident.
The 6-foot-5, 315-pound 5-star lineman has remained loyal to his inaugural pledge and continues to root for the Tigers to hold on to his commitment through National Signing Day 2019. You can chock that up to offensive line coach Jeff Grimes.
“Coach Grimes is an awesome man,” said Green. “I have a great relationship with him and I’m building it up more with him and getting closer to him. I’m feeling really comfortable with him right now. I’m still committed with him and I’ve been committed for a while, so he must be doing something right.
“There’s no reason to de-commit. LSU hasn’t done anything wrong. I’m just enjoying the process right now. That’s the main thing. I want the teams that I’m looking at to do well and do their best, and if not, I appreciate the recognition.
“It’s all about what the coaches do and how they build a team together. Do they jell quickly because the coaches are helping them out more or not jelling? That’s how you lose games. The main thing for me right now is that I have two more years to go before signing day.”
The biggest threats to LSU
Those three Lone Star State schools and SEC West rival are the four that Green identified as threats to his LSU pledge. That’s based off of recent visits to each of those schools and the warm welcomes he received on those trips.
“When I come up there, they’re really showing me love,” Green said of that quartet of schools.
Consider Sept. 1 as a date circled on the 5-star tackle’s calendar. That’s when those four schools and LSU can begin to pick up the phone and call Green. That’ll be a critical juncture in Green’s recruitment because he can identify which schools are serious about their interest in him.
“They can’t call me until Sept. 1, so that’s when they can show that they really care about me,” Green explained. “If they call, then that means that they really want me to come to their school.”
Thoughts on the 2019 class
LSU holds commitments from a trio of offensive linemen in its 2019 recruiting class, including Green and fellow 5-star prospect Kardell Thomas. In-state tackle Thomas Perry gave a verbal pledge to the Tigers during the team’s joint 7-on-7 and lineman camp last month.
LSU also has an offer out to 2019 Ruston (La.) High School athlete Ray Parker, who looked the part of an offensive tackle at the next level during the elite high school camp last month.
Green appreciates the wealth of talented linemen in the 2019 class and believes that’s a building block toward a dominant recruiting haul. He even channeled his inner “Field of Dreams” quotations to get his point across.
“If you don’t have offensive linemen, then you don’t have anything,” he stated. “LSU has got the two top linemen in the class in me and Kardell. It’s going to come. If it’s built up right, the recruiting class will come in.”
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