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 an important factor in LSU’s ability to land the nation’s top 2019 running back.
NEW ORLEANS — Noah Cain is the No. 1 running back in the country in the Class of 2019, but you didn’t need the 247Sports composite rankings to know that.
All it would take is to be a fly on the wall when the 5-star back and Baton Rouge native returned home to visit LSU for national junior day last weekend.
Cain and his father, Terrace Cain, made their way back to LSU for the first time since camping there last July. This time around, the 5-foot-11, 207-pound rising junior held an offer from the Tigers, which he received just days after Ed Orgeron was tabbed as the new head coach.
Since that time, there have been a bevy of changes taking place in Cain’s hometown. Not only has Orgeron replaced Les Miles, but Tommie Robinson has taken Jabbar Juluke’s place as the Tigers’ running backs coach and Cain’s lead recruiter. That’s a change the stud running back and priority LSU target is perfectly content with, but of course, it’s a process that he has to first get comfortable with.
“It was a great visit,” Cain told SEC Country at Nike’s “The Opening” regional in New Orleans this month. “My main focus was to see the new staff, meet Coach Robinson and Coach O, and get a better feel for them and keep developing a good vibe with LSU.
“They’re definitely one of my top 10 schools, and because I’m from Baton Rouge I grew up an LSU fan and all my family is there, too, but I got to keep developing relationships with them. I need to get a better feel for the staff. Obviously, I was used to one staff and now they have another one. So I’ll get used to them and that’s going to be the main thing for me — to get a better feel and see how I feel about them.”
Cain’s junior day stop at LSU was comprised of studying Matt Canada’s new offense and gaining an understanding of how he’d fit into the equation.
LSU is known for its power run game, but Canada’s implementing a more spread-style attack with a heavier emphasis on passing the ball and involving three- and four-wide receiver sets. That’s perfectly fine with Cain, who himself is transitioning to a similarly styled offense at IMG Academy (Fla.) this season, and understands more flexibility can open the door to a more effective rushing game.
“They’re still going to run the ball, but they’re going to be more open now,” he explained. “They’re going into the shotgun now, a lot of spread looks. Coach Canada said no one knows what we’re going to run, that they’re going to be unpredictable and make the wide receivers more involved, so that will open up lanes for the running backs.”
Cain kept a steady eye on the running backs working with Robinson, whom he met a year ago when he camped at Southern California.
After practice, the Tigers’ newly minted running backs coach spent time chatting up Cain and emphasizing the team’s need in its backfield. Even though the pursuit of 2018 running backs targets is currently a hot topic, Robinson wanted to make one thing exceedingly clear to Cain about where he stands on the big board.
“They told me where I stand on their recruiting board,” Cain began. “I’m the top 2019 guy at the running back position and they’re going to be recruiting me hard. Right now, he’s trying to get 2018 recruits, so he said that I’ll be next up in the 2019 cycle.”
Robinson’s pitch resonated with Cain, who already has LSU engrained in his top 10. Next is fostering the relationship with the coaches.
Orgeron, Robinson and area recruiter Corey Raymond are expected to make their way to see Cain at IMG Academy later this spring, and Coach O promised he’d be checking in periodically.
Although Cain has an early top 10, he is nowhere close to finalizing a decision. The 5-star running back and 2019 early enrollee first wants to take all of his official visits and expects to make his commitment in December 2018.
2019 5⭐️RB Noah Cain
Can anyone keep up? pic.twitter.com/X7lkzHNMUb
— Sam Spiegelman (@samspiegs) March 19, 2017
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