Nike’s “The Opening” competition has become an annual summer tradition where the nation’s elite high school prospects gather in Beaverton, Ore., to compete for the top honors at their respective trades.
LSU will be well-represented at the 2016 edition with six commits scheduled to be in attendance. Additionally, there are numerous Tigers targets that will also be competing, which means LSU could add even more star-studded pledges to its 2017 recruiting class.
The skill players representing LSU will play on the Hypercool 7-on-7 squad. Quarterback Myles Brennan, running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire and LSU’s newest commitment, wide receiver Jhamon Ausbon, will all compete together. That leaves defensive tackle Tyler Shelvin and offensive linemen Austin Deculus and Saahdiq Charles to compete in the Final Five Lineman Challenge.
Here’s a closer look at the six LSU commits that will represent the Tigers in Oregon later this week:
Jhamon Ausbon, 4-star WR (Bradenton, Fla.)
Measurables: 6-foot-3, 217 pounds
High School: IMG Academy, Bradenton, Fla.
National rank: No. 67 player in the nation, No. 11 wide receiver, No. 14 overall player in Florida
Skinny: The latest LSU commitment, Ausbon provides LSU with a trio of top-30 wide receivers for its 2017 recruiting class. Ausbon selected the Tigers — which are in fact his hometown team — over Texas A&M. The Houston-area product was born in Baton Rouge, La., and family nearby the LSU campus and also in New Orleans. He will instantly add a polished receiver to LSU’s offense when he arrives, and offers major upside. An IMG Academy prospect, Ausbon should also be in the ears of teammates Moses and Delpit, two of LSU’s top targets.
Myles Brennan, 3-star QB (Bay Saint Louis, Miss.)
Measurables: 6-foot-4, 172 pounds
High School: St Stanislaus High School
National rank: No. 18 pro-style quarterback, No. 6 overall player in Mississippi
Skinny: Brennan committed to LSU not long after attending Nike’s “The Opening” regional camp in New Orleans, where he was born. The Magnolia State product enjoyed a breakout summer after he competed well in the Elite 11 competition alongside fellow LSU quarterback pledge Lowell Narcisse. Brennan impressed on the camp circuit, leading to more offers and a fantastic outing at LSU’s prospect camp last month, where he flashed not only a big arm, but outstanding accuracy.
Saahdiq Charles, 3-star OL (Madison, Miss.)
Measurables: 6-foot-5, 314 pounds
High School: Madison Ridgeland Academy
National rank: No. 16 offensive guard, No. 7 overall player in Mississippi
Skinny: Charles committed to LSU over in-state power Mississippi State and was the third offensive linemen to join the Tigers’ 2017 class. The versatile lineman has played offensive tackle, guard and on the defensive line during his high school career, but will focus on left tackle as he prepares for his senior campaign. Charles will likely transition to an interior line spot at LSU, and should provide outstanding athleticism at the position. He’s good friends with fellow LSU lineman commit Austin Deculus.
Austin Deculus, 4-star OT (Cypress, Texas)
Measurables: 6-foot-6, 323 pounds
High School: Cy-Fair High School
National rank: No. 40 player in the nation, No. 8 offensive tackle, No. 4 overall player in Texas
Skinny: Deculus was one of the standout performers at Nike’s “The Opening” regional in Houston back in April, where he and LSU defensive line target Marvin Wilson shined among the masses. Deculus committed about a month later, selecting the Tigers over Alabama and Michigan. Deculus has continued to build mass as he readies for LSU, and has since surfaced as a Lone Star State recruiter for the team. He visited Wilson’s high school for the LSU satellite camp there and could be working on the 5-star defensive tackle again in Oregon.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire, 3-star RB (Baton Rouge, La.)
Measurables: 5-foot-8, 194 pounds
High School: Catholic High
National rank: No. 27 running back, No. 16 overall player in Louisiana
Skinny: One of the first members of LSU’s 2017 class, Edwards-Helaire has proven to be one of the most versatile backs in the country since the end of 2015. In the Louisiana Division I state championship, he gashed one of the state’s top defenses through the air and on the ground, and did so in front of LSU coach Les Miles. Edwards-Helaire has continued to thicken his frame while maintaining superb quickness as he gears up for his senior season, and will have a chance to shine in 7-on-7 play at “The Opening.”
Tyler Shelvin, 5-star DT (Crowley, La.)
Measurables: 6-foot-3, 369 pounds
High School: Notre Dame
National rank: No. 25 player in the nation, no. 2 defensive tackle, No. 1 player in Louisiana
Skinny: The lone 5-star prospect embedded in the Tigers’ 2017 class, Shelvin represents the future of LSU’s defensive line at the nose tackle position. The Louisiana native boasts outstanding size and even more impressive quickness and power for a 369-pound prospect. Shelvin will be a critical component of LSU’s newly implemented 3-4 defense, and like Deculus, will likely be chatting with Wilson about playing alongside one another in Baton Rouge, La. Additionally, “The Opening” should give Shelvin a chance to showcase his abilities that have somehow been kept under the radar for the last few months.
Sam Spiegelman covers LSU football recruiting for SECCountry.com and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Follow him on Twitter for the latest on who’s on their way to play in Tigers Stadium.