It has been a long-winding saga between LSU and Stephen Guidry, to say the least.
Guidry, a 4-star wide receiver who originally hails from Louisiana, was re-offered by the Tigers on Thursday a few short weeks after de-committing.
The 6-foot-4, 190-pounder is the No. 1-ranked junior college wide receiver and was LSU’s first commit at the position in the 2017 class. Guidry originally committed in May — over Alabama — after meeting with wide receivers coach Dameyune Craig during the Bayou Picnic.
Guidry de-committed in October, just days after Les Miles was fired. However, that was only part of the equation.
Guidry had to sort out his grades, which have since been rectified. The Morganza, La., native will spend another semester at Hinds (Miss.) Community College, but is expected to graduate on time to enroll at a college in time for fall camp.
Earlier this week, Guidry named Mississippi State and Arizona State as his two finalists, but the late overture from LSU has put the Tigers right back in the thick of the race for the talented wide receiver. Guidry told SEC Country that LSU is again a finalist, that his grades have improved and that he anticipates making an official visit back to Baton Rouge in January.
Guidry will finalize a decision on National Signing Day, and yet again, LSU is in a strong position.
Of course, LSU is courting top in-state receivers DeVonta Smith and Racey McMath, both of whom will officially visit next month. However, with Jazz Ferguson joining the long list of wide receivers to transfer out of LSU since the offseason, the Tigers are hoping to reel in at least three and ideally four wide receivers in their 2017 class.
Consider Guidry, Smith and McMath priority targets at the position along with 4-star signee Mannie Netherly, who signed his financial aid agreement on Tuesday and will be on campus in early January.
LSU Class Snapshot
LSU’s recruiting class was a marvel as the team made a change at head coach.
With the dead period upon us and the first round of official visits in the books, chaos has ensued.
LSU has lost two key commitments since Thanksgiving week until now in the form of blue-chip offensive prospects. However, it added a key prospect at an important position.
Here’s a peek at LSU’s 2017 class snapshot.
LSU recruiting: Where it ranks
LSU’s 18-member recruiting class is cemented as one of the top collections in the country. More impressive: Its national ranking and overall talent still can improve, if and when the Tigers land some of the 5-star talent remaining on their board.
LSU’s 2017 class ranks fifth overall and third in the SEC. It trails only Alabama (No. 1) and Georgia (No. 3).
For context purposes, the Tigers hold 17 firm pledges, including one 5-star recruit (JaCoby Stevens), nine 4-star prospects and eight more 3-star players.
The majority of LSU’s 2017 haul is comprised of blue-chip prospects. Even more impressive is that the Tigers are preparing to reel in elite players at key skill positions who will bolster depth at positions of need.
- JaCoby Stevens, 5-star S (Murfreesboro, Tenn.)
- Austin Deculus, 4-star OT (Cypress, Texas)
- Tyler Shelvin, 4-star DT (Crowley, La.)
- Grant Delpit, 4-star S (Bradenton, Fla.)
- Kary Vincent Jr., 4-star CB (Port Arthur, Texas)
LSU added 3-star Alabama linebacker to its recruiting class in the form of Monty Rice.
The 6-foot-1, 223-pounder from James Clemens (Ala.) High surprised many, landing with LSU ahead of presumptive favorite Georgia as well as Auburn.
Rice, the No. 21 inside linebacker in the 2017 class, made multiple visits to LSU since November, including the Florida game and a mid-week official visit earlier this month.
Rice credited LSU defensive coordinator Dave Aranda’s recruiting methods for picking the Tigers. He is the second linebacker in this year’s class and the third recruit from the state of Alabama.
LSU’s quarterback haul is in a shaky position, to say the least.
On Monday, 4-star dual-threat quarterback Lowell Narcisse de-committed from the Tigers amid a lack of trust in the coaching staff. It did not help LSU’s case that no offensive coordinator was in place, so Narcisse was forced to try and figure out whether he was, in fact, “the guy” moving forward.
An early enrollee, Narcisse is days away from graduating and is set to enroll in early January. He officially visited LSU this past weekend along with his brother and mother, and a source near the situation told SEC Country it was a great visit.
However, the Auburn coaches met Narcisse later Sunday night. Narcisse officially visited Auburn a week prior and is shaping up to be the new team to beat for Louisiana’s top quarterback.
Who are LSU’s top uncommitted targets?
Offensively, LSU has a pressing need at the skill position. First and foremost, the Tigers need at least two more wide receivers to bolster the depth chart after losing players to transfer, graduation and possibly the NFL. Then, there is only one running back the team has its eyes on.
- Lowell Narcisse, 4-star QB (St. James, La.) — Narcisse de-committed from LSU earlier this week amid uncertainty surrounding the incoming offense. New offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Matt Canada had a 30-minute talk with Narcisse within hours of accepting the job. Narcisse spent part of Thursday watching Canada’s offenses. LSU, Auburn and Memphis are his finalists before his announcement on Jan. 1.
- DeVonta Smith, 4-star WR (Amite, La.) — Hiring Orgeron certainly improves LSU’s chances of nabbing Louisiana’s top prospect, but count on Alabama to continue to be a factor in the race. LSU has been picking up steam with Smith, who said the team is more intriguing after the coaching change. He’ll officially visit next month before deciding on National Signing Day.
- Racey McMath, 3-star WR (New Orleans) — Dameyune Craig and Jabbar Juluke remaining on the LSU coaching staff is paramount. That seems to be the case, which bodes well for the Tigers’ chances to keep McMath in-state. He’ll officially visit in January and is a fan of Orgeron’s stamp on the program.
- Nico Collins, 4-star WR (Pinson, Ala.) — Craig lured Collins to Baton Rouge for an official visit earlier this month. That relationship carries weight, but is it enough to usurp Alabama’s and Michigan’s lead with Collins? That’s the question. It will take a strong push from Craig to assert LSU into the mix, but the Tigers have until National Signing Day to do so.
- Stephen Guidry, 4-star WR (Hinds) — Guidry de-committed in LSU in the days following Les Miles’ firing, but was offered, again, on Dec. 15. Instantly, the Louisiana native named the Tigers as a finalist. He will be on campus for an official visit in January before making a decision on National Signing Day.
- Cam Akers, 5-star RB (Clinton, Miss.) — It’s a race between contenders such as LSU, Ole Miss, Ohio State and Florida State. He’s visited all four and is coming off multiple in-home visits with Orgeron and Juluke. Given the opportunity to play early, LSU is quietly gaining steam in the Akers sweepstakes.
Defensively, LSU still has work to do to bolster its front seven. Defensive line and linebacker remain positions of need leading up to National Signing Day.
- Marvin Wilson, 5-star DT (Bellaire, Texas) — Wilson made a stop in Baton Rouge for the Florida game, then received an all-important visit from Orgeron the first week of the contact period. Wilson remains a top priority for LSU, and the coaching change at Texas certainly could work in the Tigers’ favor.
- Phidarian Mathis, 4-star DL (Monroe, La.) — It is a two-team race between LSU and ‘Bama for Louisiana’s top uncommitted defensive lineman. Mathis, too, has been a regular on the LSU sidelines this fall. Bradley Dale Peveto had led Mathis’ recruitment, which has since been inherited by Coach O and outside linebackers coach Dennis Johnson. A decision should come between the Under Armour All-America Game and signing day, and LSU may be the team to beat.
- Levi Jones, 4-star LB (Austin, Texas) — Charlie Strong’s dismissal from Texas bolstered LSU’s stock with Jones. Jones has not visited Baton Rouge since July, but the Tigers still are in great shape to add the priority outside linebacker target. An official visit should be in the works.
- K’Lavon Chaisson, 4-star DE/LB (Houston) — Defensive coordinator Dave Aranda and Chaisson have a fantastic relationship, and Chaisson has been to LSU more than any other school since the spring. LSU was his first offer, but Tom Herman to Texas could make the Longhorns the new favorite in this race.
- Will Ignont, 4-star LB (New Market, Ala.) — Ignont is committed to Tennessee but received an in-home visit from Aranda last Wednesday. LSU is working to flip the 4-star inside linebacker, who Aranda said is having one of the best senior seasons of any LSU linebacker target. Ignont said he’s 110-percent solid with the Vols but won’t close the door on LSU.
- Jacob Phillips, 4-star LB (Nashville, Tenn.) — Like Ignont, LSU will attempt to flip Phillips, an Oklahoma commit. The 4-star inside linebacker canceled an official visit to LSU to head to Tuscaloosa, Ala., but things could get interesting after Tigers director of player personnel Austin Thomas made a stop in Nashville to see Phillips.
- Todd Harris, 4-star S (Plaquemine, La.) — Harris is the only remaining defensive back on LSU’s board and is a favorite of both Aranda and defensive backs coach Corey Raymond. Harris visited LSU nearly every Saturday this fall and boasts a fantastic relationship with the Tigers’ staff. He’ll decide on National Signing Day, with LSU being the longtime favorite.
Breakdown by position
QB: 1 of 2
RB: 1 of 2
FB: 1 of 1
WR: 1 of 3 (or 4)
OL: 4 of 4
DL: 4 of 5 (or 6)
LB: 2 of 3
CB: 2 of 2
S: 2 of 2 (or 3)
Louisiana (5): Tyler Shelvin, Aaron Moffitt, Jontre Kirklin, Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Patrick Queen
Texas (4): Austin Deculus, Edward Ingram, Kary Vincent Jr., Mannie Netherly
Alabama (3): Neil Farrell, Justin Thomas, Monty Rice
Mississippi (2): Saahdiq Charles, Myles Brennan
Tennessee (1): JaCoby Stevens
Florida (1): Grant Delpit
Georgia (1): Tory Carter
West Virginia (1): Seth Stewart
All ratings are from the 247Sports composite rankings unless otherwise noted.
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