Monday, April 29, 2013
LSU enters Ronnie Clark sweepstakes
By Gary Laney
BATON ROUGE, La. -- When LSU reached out to offer ESPN 150 athlete Ronnie Clark of Calera, Ala., last week, the Tigers weren't exactly expanding their recruiting base for him.
Clark, who many project as a safety, has strong Louisiana ties. He moved to Alabama from Monroe, La., and is close to Cameron Robinson, the nation's No. 1 offensive tackle from West Monroe, La. Two more ESPN 150 prospects, safety Laurence "Hootie" Jones (Monroe/Neville) and wide receiver Cameron Sims (Monroe/Ouachita), also are from that area.
Alabama is trying for a clean sweep of the three-plus Monroe-area prosects, appearing to be strong contenders for all four.
LSU, meanwhile, has yet to offer Sims and is just now entering the Clark sweepstakes. The Tigers have pushed hard for Robinson and Jones from the beginning.
LSU already has two players among its nine commitments who might project to safety in Ed Paris and Devin Voorhies.
Paris is listed as a safety, but there has been discussion about him playing as a big cornerback. Voorhies has said LSU has talked to him about playing on offense, and a future position has not been finalized.
Gibson visited by Wilson: Louisiana quarterback Quentin Gibson (Marrero/Archbiship Shaw) made a name for himself with a strong performance at the Dallas Elite 11/NFTC camp.
He wasn't exactly an unknown, but the strong showing in Dallas has ramped up interest. Auburn, Arizona State, Florida State, Mississippi State and Ole Miss are among the schools showing interest, but it's clear he would like an offer from home-state LSU.
He was excited last week week when LSU recruiting coordinator Frank Wilson visited him at his suburban New Orleans school Thursday.
"We had a nice talk about my recruitment," Gibson said. "We also talked about LSU offensive coordinator Cam Cameron."
Gibson is still waiting for his first offer. He might have to go to one of LSU's camps and perform well before getting an LSU offer.
LSU leads for DE Thornton: ESPN 150 defensive end Justin Thornton named LSU his leader in a tweet he sent out last week.
His tweet suggested the Tigers were the leaders in his final top five.
"#LSU, #Texas A&M, #Florida, #Georgia, #Auburn ... my final 5 in order and last one. #GODBLESS." his tweet said.
LSU is after high-end defensive ends the year after landing four defensive ends to replenish a position that lost three players to the first five rounds of the NFL draft. Other major targets include Deondre Clark, a 4-star end from Oklahoma City and Gerald Willis, Louisiana's top defensive line prospect whose skill might translate to defensive tackle.