No. 18 LSU takes to the road to this weekend to try to continue its winning ways away from the Tiger Stadium.
LSU commit Patrick Queen has been on hand for each of the last two victories against Jacksonville State and Mississippi State, but will take his talents out of Louisiana this Saturday.
Queen, a 4-star linebacker from Livonia (La.) High School, is set to take his first of four official visits. First up is a trip to The Grove to catch Ole Miss host Georgia.
The longtime LSU commit has received an enormous amount of attention from LSU’s SEC West rival. Queen, along with fellow LSU target and best friend Todd Harris, attended the Rebels’ prospect camp in early June, where Queen procured his offer.
Ole Miss has continued to try to ride momentum with Queen. Down the line, Big Ten powers Nebraska and Indiana will do the same before he officially visits LSU on Nov. 5 for the annual showdown against Alabama.
Cause for concern? To be frank, not so much.
Queen may have interest in Ole Miss, among others, but he’s been exceedingly solid in his commitment to LSU since February. The 6-foot-1, 219-pounder, set to play the “Rover” position in Dave Aranda’s defense, has attended nearly every LSU recruiting event since committing, including the spring game, Bayou Picnic, both prospect camps and the team barbecue. Pair that with his attendance at both of LSU’s home games this season and there is little doubt on his commitment.
Queen represents LSU’s lone linebacker pledge in the 2017 class thus far, a position group that should add three or four more prospects by National Signing Day. He’s an invaluable component and will play an integral role in replenishing a linebacking unit that’s set to lose Kendell Beckwith, Duke Riley and Tashawn Bower, among others, after the season.
Even though Queen ranks as the No. 15 athlete in this cycle, the Livonia (La.) standout is arguably the most underrated commitment in LSU’s class. He’s amassed outstanding statistics on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball so far this fall. His versatility is one thing; his football I.Q. and instinctive play is another. It’s no wonder why Aranda is such a glaring fan of Queen and is anxious to insert him into his defense next fall.
Alabama defenders among top targets taking in Auburn-LSU
LSU hosted a double-digit collection of blue-chip prospects last weekend in its SEC opener against Mississippi State. The Tigers are on the road this weekend to take on Auburn, but numerous targets will be watching both sides come Saturday.With Queen in hand, LSU will attempt to haul in upwards of three other linebackers in its 2017 class.
Among those in attendance will be 4-star Alabama defensive end Ryan Johnson, 4-star Alabama inside linebacker Will Ignont and 3-star Alabama linebacker Thomas Johnston, as well as 4-star Louisiana defensive back Brad Stewart and 3-star teammate, 2018 safety Joseph Foucha.
LSU holds commitments from four defensive linemen in its 2017 class, but the verdict is out on who could take the final spots.
Marvin Wilson, Isaiah Buggs and Phidarian Mathis are the top candidates, and LSU will make a fourth-quarter push to land each of these highly rated linemen. One other option is Johnson.
The 4-star prospect from Mobile, Ala., is squarely located in Dameyune Craig’s recruiting area. He’s most closely linked to the two in-state powers — Alabama and Auburn — but did visit LSU for Junior Day at the start of the spring and could wind up being a late target for Craig and the Tigers.
With Queen in hand, LSU will attempt to haul in upwards of three other linebackers in its 2017 class.
We know about Dylan Moses, K’Lavon Chaisson, Christopher Allen and Levi Jones, but another Alabama prospect that the Tigers have kept tabs on is Ignont.
One of the top inside backers in the cycle, Ignont named LSU one of his three finalits along with Auburn and UCLA. He visited for LSU’s July prospect camp and team recruiting barbecue, and is scheduled to return to Baton Rouge in November when Alabama rolls into the town.
Ignont was on the verge of committing at the end of August before the start of his senior season, but delayed his decision until after he takes his official visits. He’s already been to Auburn’s opener against Clemson. He’ll head to LSU and then to the West Coast in November, and a commitment could come soon after.
The winner of LSU-Auburn could hold some power in possibly swaying one of these teams to the top.
At 6-foot-2 and 215 pounds, Johnston has the size to play F-linebacker in Aranda’s defense. Ranked as the No. 18 prospect from Alabama and the No. 24 outside backer in the class, Johnston could emerge as a top target should LSU lose steam with one of the other aforementioned recruits at the position like Moses, Allen, Chaisson or Jones.
Johnston was supposed to participate in LSU’s July prospect camp, but did not make the trek from Spanish Fort, Ala., to Baton Rouge. The twist here: he’s teammates with current LSU defensive end commit Justin Thomas, who pledged to the Tigers in August.
Wide receivers coach Dameyune Craig is responsible for the Mobile, Ala., region, helping to land both Thomas and fellow defensive lineman Neil Farrell so far. While Johnston attending the Auburn-LSU showdown is an encouraging sign, he is more closely associated with the in-state Tigers. That’s not to say things could change down the road.
Auburn game this weekend!?
— Thomas Johnston (@TDJohnston42) September 20, 2016
LSU was late to the party in offering Stewart, one of the most dynamic defensive backs in the country. Stewart pushed off committing before the start of his senior season simply because he wasn’t ready. He added numerous offers — including ones from Auburn and Alabama — during prospect camps this summer.
Stewart also added an offer from the Tigers during the July prospect camp after clocking a 4.4 40 time in front of defensive backs coach Corey Raymond. LSU holds commitments from two safeties — Grant Delpit and JaCoby Stevens — and two cornerbacks — Jontre Kirklin and Kary Vincent Jr. — in the class. There may be room for one more, but the late overture may have cost LSU a realistic chance with one of the most sought-after defensive backs in the 2017 cycle.
The 2018 safety from New Orleans attended LSU’s prospect camp in July and remains on the coaching staff’s radar. Auburn extended an offer to Foucha in the spring.
The 3-star prospect grew up a fan of Cam Newton, though like most defensive backs in Louisiana, has longstanding ties to area recruiter Jabbar Juluke and the in-state Tigers.
Foucha is one of the top up-and-coming prospects in the recruiting cycle. Perhaps his top attribute is his ability to deliver rattling blows to opposing receivers in coverage. LSU holds commitments from 5-star cornerback Kelvin Joseph and 4-star safety Nadab Joseph in the 2018 class, with offers out to a bevy of some of the top defensive backs in the class.
The McDonogh 35 standout is certainly a candidate to earn an offer from the Tigers down the line, and Auburn will be one of the schools to beat.
All ratings are from the 247Sports composite rankings unless otherwise noted.
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