Monday, April 8, 2013
Rare senior class at LB must be replaced
By Gary Laney
BATON ROUGE, La. -- It might seem strange to say, but LSU has a rare luxury of knowing it will lose at least two linebackers after the 2013 season with both Lamin Barrow and Tahj Jones entering their senior seasons.
What's so weird about that? It's becoming more rare for contributors such as Barrow to make it to a senior season as the Tigers have adapted to players leaving after their junior or redshirt sophomore seasons.
With Barrow and Jones departing after this season, we can look at candidates to replace them in the 2014 recruiting class.
OLB Donnie Alexander (New Orleans/Karr): Slight but fast, Alexander's scouting report reads much like it was tipped out of Jones' file. Alexander continues LSU's trend toward smaller, faster outside linebackers who won't easily get caught in pass-coverage mismatches against spread teams.
DE/LB Sharieff Rhaheed (Fort Pierce, Fla./Fort Pierce Central): A surprise, under-the-radar early commit, Rhaheed is generally listed as a defensive end, but at a slender 202 pounds, some have speculated he could end up at linebacker, where he won't have to put on as much weight and his speed and quick-twitch ability will serve him just as well.
ILB Kenny Young (River Ridge, La./John Curtis Christian): A prototype inside linebacker, Young is a fierce, physical tackler whose body will likely carry inside linebacker weight. It's easy to see him developing into a Kevin Minter type in an LSU uniform.
ILB DeShaun Davis (Prichard, Ala./Vigor): Another physical tackler, Prichard would favor LSU considering that the Mobile, Ala., area is only a few hours from Baton Rouge.
ILB Josh Mabin (Houston/Klein Oak): Mabin doesn't have an LSU offer yet, but if one comes, he's another fit at an inside linebacker spot.