There are numerous ways a college coach can make an impression.
For LSU defensive line coach Ed Orgeron, being early is being on time.
Orgeron was at Madison Prep High School (Baton Rouge, La.) before 5 a.m. Wednesday morning, awaiting the arrival of four-star defensive end Bryan Jones.
The nation’s No. 7 strong-side defensive end walked into his school’s weight room to see Orgeron, leading the 6-foot-5, 240-pound prospect to do a double-take at the situation.
“I was surprised to see him,” Jones told SEC Country. “He beat me there. I mean, he was there before 5 a.m. I walked in the door at 5 a.m. on the dot, and I walked up to him, greeted him and I got to work.”
Orgeron and Jones didn’t have much time to chat, as the four-star prospect had to get to his training responsibilities.
That was one of the things the defensive line coach was hoping to see.
“He said, ‘Hey Big B. How are you?’” Jones recalled. “Then he said: ‘Let me see how you work.’”
Jones was on hand Saturday in Tigers Stadium to watch LSU’s annual spring game, but was forced to leave soon after arriving because of a household emergency.
That left Jones unable to watch LSU’s new-look defense or speak with any of the assistant coaches.
Receiving an in-person visit just a few days later, however, helped cushion the blow for Jones.
“He was in there the whole time watching me and observing me by recording some of the workouts I did,” Jones said. “It was a blessing to see my hometown team in person and for him to be up that early to see me. That’s a lot of love, too.
“That’s showing me that they’re really interested in me, and that’s very early for a person to be up. I mean, I just like it. It means a lot to me and it shows that I am being recognized by one of the best schools.”
In addition to LSU, Alabama, Ole Miss and Nebraska have all reached out to Jones, Louisiana’s No. 10 overall prospect in the Class of 2017, over the phone.
Jones has spoken with Ole Miss defensive line coach Chris Kiffin and Nebraska defensive line coach John Parrella. With the visit from Orgeron, Jones has enjoyed a wild 48 hours.
“It’s been a blessing to get to talk and communicate with some of the greatest coaches to ever do it,” Jones said. “I can’t do nothing but thank God for the blessings he keeps sending me.”
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.