Welcome to the third edition of SEC Country’s LSU recruiting mailbag, which comes to you exactly one week before National Signing Day (Feb. 3).
LSU has certainly gone through an interesting week on the recruiting trail after securing commitments from five-star defensive tackle Rashard Lawrence and four-star offensive tackle Willie Allen.
The Tigers are also expecting another small, but important crop of visitors this weekend. So, how much more ground can they cover before prospects start turning their commitments into signed letters of intent?
Here were the five best questions in the mailbag for this week:
Will LSU get commitments from both Kristian Fulton and Shyheim Carter?
The more realistic expectation is that LSU gets commitments from both Fulton and Trayvon Mullen.
At this point, Fulton is the only one of those three defensive back prospects that has LSU out in front of his list. Fulton will announce his final decision National Signing Day after making his final official visit to Florida this weekend.
Carter, however, has seemingly brought LSU back into the mix after leaning toward Alabama, Ole Miss, Miami and UGA over the past couple of weeks. Carter has maintained strong ties with the LSU coaching staff, and because he has two children in nearby Kentwood, La., the Tigers could make a late push for the four-star corner.
Mullen made his fifth and final official visit to LSU last weekend, and has publicly stated that all five of his finalists — LSU, Florida State, Clemson, Louisville and TCU — all have a chance. However, LSU, Florida State and Clemson are the three most likely teams to nab a commitment from the four-star cornerback.
Between D’Andre Christmas-Giles and Stephon Taylor, which defensive tackle is more likely to end up at LSU?
Both of the New Orleans prospects are set to make their decision on Feb. 3, but Christmas-Giles is the defensive tackle more likely to don a purple and gold cap.
This past week, Christmas-Giles announced that LSU was among his three finalists, along with Texas and TCU. Canceling his official visit to Ole Miss this weekend only fortifies LSU’s chances at landing the fast-rising defensive tackle.
Taylor, however, included LSU in his top five, but never made an official visit to Baton Rouge, La. Instead, the four-star prospect officially visited Texas and Florida State, and will round out January with an official to South Carolina.
The most likely permutation is that Christmas-Giles winds up at LSU, with Taylor more inclined to choose either Texas or Florida State. Still, while Christmas-Giles may be favoring the Tigers, he is strongly considering both the Longhorns and Horned Frogs.
What are LSU’s legitimate chances of securing a commitment from Carter?
Upon close examination, Carter may re-consider his options with LSU. However, I believe it’s unlikely that the Louisiana native winds up in Baton Rouge, La.
Alabama seems like the front runner, with LSU, Miami, UGA and Ole Miss all making a push for second place. That could very much change depending on what transpires this upcoming weekend when the four-star cornerback makes an official visit to Oxford, Miss., or if those plans are altered and LSU gets another unofficial visit before Signing Day.
LSU is working diligently to bring Carter back on campus again before Signing Day, and the fact that the cornerback has two children may factor into his decision.
Louisiana’s No. 5 athlete and the nation’s No. 9 cornerback may ultimately decide that Alabama is the most suitable landing spot.
LSU added a commitment from Willie Allen last week. But what are the chance the Tigers land another offensive tackle in its recruiting class?
LSU remains in the mix for three nationally renowned offensive tackles. How likely the Tigers are to secure a commitment from one of the three remains very much in the air, and a lot is dependant on how this weekend goes.
LSU will host four-star Mississippi offensive tackle Scott Lashley on the final weekend of the recruiting season for an official visit. Lashley is also strongly considering Mississippi State, as well as Alabama, where he visited last weekend. He also took an official visit to Alabama on the weekend on Jan. 15.
Earlier this month, LSU offensive coordinator made the trip to the nation’s capital to pay a visit to highly regarded tackle Jauan Williams. The Tigers face stiff competition from both Maryland and Florida State for the 6-foot-7, 303-pound four-star prospect, who is seemingly atop LSU’s big board for offensive tackles.
Lastly, LSU remains a dark horse for four-star Georgia prospect E.J. Price. The Tigers are behind Auburn, UGA and Southern Cal for the highly touted tackle, but it is difficult to discount LSU after Price took an official visit to Baton Rouge, La. on Jan. 15.
After nabbing the commitment from Allen, LSU now has two offensive tackle commitments in its 2016 class to go with Jakori Savage. With LSU set to lose both its starting tackles from last season, it could benefit from adding some depth. However, it remains unclear where the program prioritizes this position with defensive tackle, defensive back and quarterback all positions of emphasis in this year’s class.
Which prospects should be watched as Signing Day approaches as potential flips?
If I was asked this question about a week ago my answer would be Irv Smith and Sci Martin.
Fast forward to today, a week before National Signing Day, and my truthful response would be none of the above.
Smith, four-star tight end and top uncommitted prospect remaining in the nation, de-committed from Texas A&M last week. That shook up the big boards for teams such as Notre Dame, Texas and Alabama. LSU tried to get Smith to consider visiting LSU this weekend, but that is seems very unlikely at this point.
Martin, a three-star defensive end also from New Orleans, would’ve been among the top prospects likely to flip his commitment. But after officially visiting LSU last weekend and hearing how highly-regarded regarded he is by the coaching staff — and still not flipping his commitment — Martin is going to end up with TCU.