The public became aware of Saahdiq Charles’ pledge to LSU on Tuesday, but the Tigers’ coaches have had a week to digest the decision.
Charles, a three-star offensive lineman out of Mississippi, committed to LSU last Thursday in advance of the Bayou Picnic.
Truth be told, the Magnolia State’s 12th-rated prospect in the Class of 2017 was the first of five LSU commitments in as many days leading up to and following the Picnic weekend.
Charles selected LSU over Mississippi State in a decision that came down to the wire.
What swayed him toward the Tigers? Well, as the weekend proved to us all, he knew he was going to be a part of quite a special class.
“It was a close race at a certain point,” Charles told SEC Country. “It was close until I was actually 100 percent sure that I wanted to go to LSU.”
Charles made up his mind last Thursday, when he informed LSU coach Les Miles and offensive line coach Jeff Grimes of his decision.
His gut feeling had him leaning toward LSU.
“I’d say last week when I actually committed to them,” Charles said of his thought process. “It was just the great relationship I had with Coach Grimes and the class we have coming in. It’s going to be special.”
Subtly, Charles’ commitment began a domino effect of pledges for the Purple and Gold.
On Friday, LSU picked up a commitment from four-star Texas offensive tackle Austin Deculus, a close friend of Charles’. The momentum carried over to the Bayou Picnic on Saturday when the nation’s top junior college wide receiver Stephen Guidry and Georgia fullback Tory Carter followed suit. On Monday night, three-star Louisiana defensive lineman Aaron Moffitt joined the fray.
Charles made his announcement public on Tuesday, but had already completed his thought process. The Louisiana native understood that there was an opportunity to do something great with the Tigers that he couldn’t pass up.
“I feel really comfortable with the coaches,” he said. “Then this class coming into play, and I’m a fan of the school. So all that coming into play made me have no regrets … It’s great that all of us are coming in together, and (within) this group of guys there’s a lot of talent, but even more character, which will carry us further than just on the field.
“It’s going to bring us together and make a tight-knit group of guys. Just knowing the guys that you (know) actually care for you and have your back brings things to another level on the field.”
Both Miles and Grimes were “excited” and “happy” to receive Charles’ commitment last week, according to Charles. More so, the coaches were optimistic about the future of their offensive line.
The 6-foot-5, 314-pounder from Madison-Ridgeland Academy (Madison, Miss.) is being viewed as a potential right tackle or right guard on the LSU offensive line.
Charles will play left tackle during his final high school season after spending time at tight end, defensive end and right tackle throughout his playing career.
He’s up for whatever role the LSU coaches have in mind for him when he touches down in Baton Rouge, La.
“I just want to play, to be honest,” Charles laughed. “I just stay focused on what I’m doing in the moment, and I do what I need for the team.”
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.