Sunday, August 18, 2013
Quinn shows LSU still rules in Louisiana
By Gary Laney
BATON ROUGE, La. -- A recruiting class that LSU fans are hoping will be historically significant has been coming together too slowly for many in Louisiana.
Before wide receiver Trey Quinn (Lake Charles, La./Barbe) became the highest-ranked member of the 2014 ESPN 300 to commit to LSU on Saturday (Quinn is No. 37 overall and No. 3 among wide receivers), there was much consternation around the state about whether the Tigers would adequately secure what's arguably the most bountiful football prospect harvest the state has ever produced.
Forget finishing with a No. 1 class -- LSU entered this weekend outside the top 10 with a mere 13 commitments.
WR Trey Quinn is one of six in-state ESPN 300 prospects to commit to LSU in the 2014 class.
If anything, the Quinn commitment should relax those concerns, at least a little.
There are 18 Louisiana players in the 2014 ESPN 300, and 14 of them have offers from the Tigers. Of those, Quinn became the sixth in-state ESPN 300 prospect to pledge to LSU, joining quarterback Brandon Harris (Bossier City, La./Parkway), offensive guard Garrett Brumfield (Baton Rouge, La./University), tight end Jacory Washington (Westlake, La./Westlake), linebacker Donnie Alexander (New Orleans/Karr) and wide receiver D.J. Chark (Alexandria, La./Alexandria).
The other eight remain uncommitted. That means it is possible for the Tigers to sweep the 14 Louisiana ESPN 300 players they are targeting.
LSU never offered two Louisiana players in the ESPN 300 who chose to go elsewhere. Defensive back Jermaine Roberts (New Orleans/St. Augustine) chose Texas without an LSU offer, while 315-pound defensive tackle O.J. Smith (Bossier City, La./Airline) is a natural scheme fit as a nose tackle in Alabama's 3-4 defense and chose the Tide without ever getting an offer from LSU.
Wide receiver Cameron Sims (Monroe, La./Ouachita), the No. 63 player in the ESPN 300, announced Saturday that he'll choose his school Aug. 24. He'll be the third in-state ESPN 300 player to pick a school other than LSU, but like Smith and Roberts he lacks an LSU offer.
Of course, it's not automatic that LSU will continue to dominate the in-state class.
While Quinn is the highest-rated player in LSU's class, the state is loaded with players ranked even higher than Quinn, who is rated the No. 7 prospect in Louisiana. The state's top six players all remain uncommitted, led by running back Leonard Fournette (New Orleans/St. Augustine), the nation's top-ranked player.
As a reminder that LSU still has work to do to maintain its in-state momentum, Fournette was in Tuscaloosa, Ala., Saturday to watch an Alabama scrimmage along with the nation's No. 3 and state's No. 2 player, offensive tackle Cameron Robinson (West Monroe, La./West Monroe), and the nation's No. 24 and state's No. 4 player, safety Laurence Jones (Monroe, La./Neville).
It is possible LSU can win the majority of the state's top prospects, but miss the biggest prizes and thus end up having the 2014 class feel like a loss.
But the more pieces that fall into place, the more optimistic the Tigers can be about the rest of the class.