LSU Tigers: Jeremy Cutrer

Instant-impact candidates at LSU

February, 9, 2015
Feb 9
8:00
AM ET
BATON ROUGE, La. -- LSU’s 2014 recruiting class was important, not just because of the significant talent infusion that it provided, but also because of the numerous holes that the Tigers needed to fill.

A half-dozen signees from ESPN’s No. 2-rated class -- including Leonard Fournette, Jamal Adams, Malachi Dupre and Davon Godchaux -- became instant-impact freshmen, and most of the 23-man class contributed in some capacity.

LSU’s newest crop of signees does not face the same pressure to make an immediate impact since the Tigers weren’t hit by the NFL draft as hard as they had been in recent years. That said, there are still several players in this class who seem likely to play right away.

Here is an early attempt at identifying some of those players:

Arden Key: LSU loses both of its starting defensive ends in Danielle Hunter and Jermauria Rasco, and the candidates to replace them are largely unproven. The Tigers also need to bolster their pass rush after totaling just 19 sacks last fall. Enter Key, who LSU coach Les Miles described as a “pass-rush specialist” and who defensive line coach Ed Orgeron compared to former Tigers star Barkevious Mingo.

Miles and Orgeron both predicted on signing day that Key, ESPN’s No. 24 overall prospect and No. 6 defensive end, will immediately help address the Tigers’ needs at end.

“It’s the school that he always wanted to come to and you could just tell when he walked into Tiger Stadium, he’s a cat, he’s a Tiger, we’re glad to have him,” Orgeron said. “He’s quick-twitch, long levers. We expect him to play next year and we expect him to work very hard this spring and this summer to be ready.”

Tyron Johnson: Wide receiver was not a huge position of need in this class, but of course LSU still wanted Johnson. ESPN rated the New Orleans native as the top player in Louisiana as well as the No. 30 overall prospect and No. 3 wideout.

[+] EnlargeTyron Johnson
Miller Safrit/ESPNLSU has a deep WR corps, but ESPN 300 receiver Tyron Johnson could break into the rotation right away.
The Tigers have a ton of young receivers, but junior Travin Dural is the only one who has proven himself as a consistent contributor. Johnson should have a shot at jumping into the positional rotation right away.

“His signing sends a message to the state and to the rest of our young guys that if you’re best, you need to come to LSU, because frankly, we'll play you,” Miles said.

Cornerbacks: LSU has playing time available in the secondary following the departures of safety Ronald Martin and cornerbacks Jalen Collins and Rashard Robinson. A newcomer might not jump straight into the starting lineup, but it seems likely that at least one of them will see regular action. The question is which member of the group -- one of the nation’s best collections of defensive back signees -- will make the cut?

Kevin Toliver II, ESPN’s No. 10 overall prospect and only five-star signee in LSU’s class, seems like the safest bet since he is already enrolled and will participate in spring practice. But Donte Jackson also has star potential, and Miles said that the speedster might contribute as a return man and on offense.

Don’t forget about Xavier Lewis and Jeremy Cutrer, either. Cutrer was committed to LSU in 2013 but had to spend the last two years at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College when he failed to qualify. He’s exceptionally athletic, which could help him become an immediate contributor if he makes the grade and enrolls at LSU later this year.

“It’s a standard of excellence we look for at that position group,” LSU recruiting coordinator Frank Wilson said. “The guys that we went after fit the bill. We feel that they can come in and contribute very early. Patrick Peterson charged us with that problem in 2010 with a young Tharold Simon, Tyrann Mathieu, Eric Reid, and we’ve tried to hold that standard in recruiting at that position group.”

Running backs: Also the Tigers’ running backs coach, Wilson filled a major need by adding three players to his position group. LSU did not have a scholarship fullback on the roster after losing Connor Neighbors and Melvin Jones, so getting the versatile David Ducre (another early enrollee) was a coup.

Wilson also lost veterans Kenny Hilliard and Terrence Magee, leaving Fournette and Darrel Williams as his only scholarship tailbacks prior to signing day. In signing Derrius Guice and Nick Brossette, LSU added two of the state’s top prospects -- both of whom seem likely to help right away because of LSU’s tendency to rotate backs.

“We didn’t have any scholarship fullbacks, so we needed to address that need at that position group,” Wilson said. “And then we have two sophomores and bring in two freshmen [at tailback]. It gives us some leeway some next year where it’s not a position of demand in next year’s class.

“But we like where we’re at in that, only because it gives you quality depth and it’s not stacked. At times we’ve been as high as six, so four is a good number for us because the rotation becomes realistic.”

LSU 10: Projecting the impact newcomers 

June, 13, 2013
6/13/13
10:00
AM ET
BATON ROUGE, La. -- With LSU's summer semester under way, new players who graduated from their previous schools in May are on campus and taking part in summer workouts. The one exception is defensive back Rashard Robinson, who will use summer school to try to become academically eligible for the fall.

With eight newcomers having already enrolled in the spring semester and gone through spring practice, that means 18 new scholarship faces joined the program. Here are the 10 most likely to make a quick impact:

Running back tops LSU 2014 needs 

February, 13, 2013
2/13/13
8:00
AM ET
BATON ROUGE, La. -- It's a bit of a gamble.

LSU took no running backs in its 2013 signing class and enters 2014 with only four scholarship running backs on its roster. Given a good season by sophomore Jeremy Hill -- who will be three years out of high school by season's end and, thus, draft eligible -- LSU might lose two more at season's end (Alfred Blue is a senior).

It would have made sense to prop up the numbers this year by taking a running back. The goal is to leave a void and use it to entice 2014 star Leonard Fournette (New Orleans/St. Augustine), the top running back to come out of the state in years. If LSU lands Fournette, the gamble pays off. If not, well, the Tigers better find somebody to fill the void.

Running back headlines the list of needs LSU will be looking to address in the 2014 recruiting cycle. Here are LSU's biggest areas of need:


To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

LSU's signing day superlatives 

February, 6, 2013
2/06/13
1:53
PM ET
BATON ROUGE, La. -- LSU’s 26-player recruiting class is signed, sealed and delivered.

Well, maybe.

We’ve yet to see where Priest Willis will go or whether Tevin Lawson will accept LSU’s grayshirt offer instead of choosing a conventional scholarship offer elsewhere. And, for that matter, there still might be a scholarship awaiting defensive back Jeremy Cutrer, who did not sign Wednesday because it was unclear whether he will qualify academically.


To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

New commit brings LSU versatility 

January, 30, 2013
1/30/13
10:30
PM ET
BATON ROUGE, La. -- That Duke Riley plays linebacker and is able to run a 40-yard dash in under 4.5 seconds had many thinking he might be destined to fill LSU's need for a safety in the 2013 class.

The way J.T. Curtis, Riley's legendary coach at River Ridge (La.) John Curtis sees it, Riley might fill pass coverage needs while not having to move from his linebacker comfort zone.

"I see him at that weakside linebacker spot where he might be asked to cover that No. 2 receiver," said Curtis, the winningest high school coach in Louisiana prep history. "The game has changed so much. It's about quickness and being able to play in space and that's what Duke brings."

To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

Four-star LB Riley makes his choice 

January, 30, 2013
1/30/13
10:04
PM ET
BATON ROUGE, La. -- The worst-kept secret in town about four-star linebacker Duke Riley became official with one, very excited tweet from Riley's"1Goal1Dream" Twitter account Wednesday night.


To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

S Cutrer considers alternate to LSU 

January, 30, 2013
1/30/13
5:29
PM ET
BATON ROUGE, La. -- When Kentwood (La.) Jewel Sumner coach Zephaniah Powell said Cowboys safety Jeremy Cutrer was a "priority" in LSU's recruiting class, he wasn't kidding.

Cutrer is the only safety in LSU's 27-man class, a need area for the Tigers, especially with more teams forcing them to use 5- and 6-man secondaries against spread offenses. So it's a particularly troubling development for LSU that Cutrer might not sign as intended.


To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

LSU makes pitches to recruits, waits 

January, 28, 2013
1/28/13
8:00
AM ET
BATON ROUGE, La. -- At the end of his weekend trip to LSU, Tashawn Bower sent a Tweet that said "1 visit to go." Duke Riley stayed in Baton Rouge an extra day. Eddie Jackson sent out an Instagram photo with a white No. 2 LSU jersey on.


To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

LSU looking to win prospects over 

January, 25, 2013
1/25/13
8:00
AM ET
BATON ROUGE, La. -- With signing day looming, LSU is looking to sway some heavily recruited defensive talent this weekend as three players holding multiple SEC offers are scheduled to visit.

ESPN 150 defensive end Tashawn Bower (Somerville, N.J./Immaculata), an Auburn commit who has been taking visits to other schools, highlights a trio of uncommitted defensive players coming to Baton Rouge.


To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

Recruiting Week in Review: LSU 

January, 7, 2013
1/07/13
8:00
AM ET
BATON ROUGE, La. -- No LSU commit won MVP, nor scored a touchdown at the Under Armour All-American game.

Yet, it was a huge, huge game for LSU recruiting.

[+] EnlargeKendell Beckwith
Miller Safrit/ESPN.comKendell Beckwith's commitment this weekend was necessary good news for LSU.
LSU landed its two biggest commits in its 25-man 2013 class at the Under Armor game as defensive tackle Maquedius Bain, ranked No. 43 in the ESPN 150, committed Wednesday. Kendell Beckwtih, ranked No. 19 by ESPN, then committed during the first quarter of the game Friday in St. Petersburg, Fla.

To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

Where LSU will need help: Defense 

January, 3, 2013
1/03/13
8:00
AM ET
BATON ROUGE, La. -- The commitment of Maquedius Bain to LSU on Wednesday made perfect sense.

Bain, the No. 6 defensive tackle in the ESPN 150 and the highest-rated of the Tigers' 24 commitments, figures to play at LSU early. And he'll play a position where the Tigers have a tremendous recent track record for getting players to the NFL. Part of the reason there is a need for defensive tackles in this LSU class (Bain is one of four DT commitments in the class) is the presumed early departure of junior Bennie Logan to the NFL.

If Bain does play immediately, it will continue an LSU trend: Tiger freshmen should come ready to play because many of them will play. LSU used 15 true freshmen in the 2012 season, including four who started and a fifth who was a special-teams starter.

To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

After bowl, LSU shifts to recruiting

January, 1, 2013
1/01/13
8:00
AM ET
So, the season's over.

LSU finished playing football before the year even ended with Monday's last-second, 25-24 loss to Clemson in the Chick-fil-A Bowl, a downer of an ending to a 10-3 season.

[+] EnlargeGreg Gilmore
Scott Drucker/IntersportLSU fans will get an early look at DL commit Greg Gilmore at the Under Armour All-America Game.
The most disappointing part? It was over before January. The eighth-ranked Tigers were the only team in the BCS top 12 to play before New Year's Day, which is usually the date where the serious bowl games begin. That LSU was left out of the New Year's Day games seemed to put a damper on the whole postseason, a feeling amplified by the result of the game.

Despite that, there's plenty to look forward to in the next five-plus weeks.

It is prime recruiting season, after all.

There will be all-star games, visitation weekends and even an early jump on 2014 recruiting for LSU and its prospects, all capped by national signing day Feb. 6.

Here's what's on the agenda and what to watch from an LSU perspective:

Friday

Under Armor All-America Game: LSU targets Maquedius Bain and Kendell Beckwith will announce their commitments at the game. Targets Robert Nkemdiche, Priest Willis, Josh McNeil, Antonio Conner, Artie Burns and Tim Williams are also playing in the game. Also playing are LSU commits Jeryl Brazil, Greg Gilmore and Ethan Pocic are also playing.

Semper Fidelis All-American Game: LSU commits Jeremy Cutrer and Christian LaCouture will play in this game.

Saturday

U.S. Army All-American Bowl: LSU fans will be able to take a glimpse at the Tigers' offensive future with LSU commits Hayden Rettig (quarterback), Desean Smith (tight end), John Diarse (wide receiver) and Josh Boutte (offensive line) all on the same team. LSU commits Tre'Davious White and Frank Herron are also in the game on defense.

Jan. 12

Boys from the Boot Day: Top 2014 players from Louisiana will be invited for unofficial visits designed to get them familiar with the recruiting process and to jump-start their relationships with LSU coaches.

That will be a huge day for LSU, considering Louisiana, perhaps the nation's most prospect-laden state on a per-capita basis, looks particularly strong in 2014. Among the players who might attend are running back Leonard Fournette, Cameron Robinson, Gerald Willis, Speedy Noil, Trey Quinn and several others.

Jan. 14

Spring semester begins: Early enrollees will begin classes, letting us know what players will get a jump on their classmates with spring practice.

Jan. 19-21, 26-28

Visit weekends: Players who haven't visited yet can set up visits on these weekends.

Feb. 6

National signing day: The culmination of the recruiting season.

Willis highlights big Dec. 14 weekend 

December, 5, 2012
12/05/12
9:00
AM ET
Priest WillisDrew Russell/Intersport.com ESPN 150 safety Priest Willis is scheduled to officially visit LSU Dec. 14, highlighting what is expected to be an important recruiting weekend for the Tigers.
BATON ROUGE, La. -- The middle of December could be big for LSU football recruiting.

LSU is scheduled to host a big recruiting weekend Dec. 14-16, and it's looking like some intriguing unsigned players will be there as well.

One player who confirmed a visit to LSU that weekend is safety Priest Willis. The stepfather of the ESPN 150 safety from Tempe (Ariz.) Marco de Niza confirmed the visit with ESPN.com's Erik McKinney on Tuesday.

To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

As Louisiana's high school football playoffs reach their second week, the matchups get better in the five classes, each whittled down to a field of 16 remaining teams, many who feature some of the state's top prospects. In Class 5A, West Monroe and Scott/Acadiana meet in a matchup of traditional powers. In 4A, Neville meets Breaux Bridge in a rematch of an epic semifinal matchup last year. Here are the top games involving major prospects this week: Class 5A

No. 16 Geismar/Dutchtown (8-2) at No. 1 Metairie/Rummel (10-0): Dutchtown has plenty of talent, including Mississippi State commit Shelby Christy at wide reciever. It was surprising to see the Griffons slip to the No. 16 seed. It's a tough draw for the top-seeded Raiders, led by dual-threat quarterback Damian Williams, who sports a Kansas State offer.

No. 9 Monroe/Ouachita Parish (9-2) at No. 25 Ruston (6-5): The Monroe area, which won three of last year's five state championships last season, showed its toughness again last week when Ruston upset No. 8 seed South Lafourche, creating an all-Northeast Louisiana second-round match. Ouachita features three-star receiver and Washington commit Caleb Tucker at linebacker and Taijuan Thomas and 2014 ESPN Watch List member Cameron Sims at wide receiver.

To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

Games to watch for Louisiana recruits 

November, 1, 2012
11/01/12
11:45
AM ET
BATON ROUGE, La. -- Saturday will be a who's who of Louisiana's top prospects in one place when LSU hosts Alabama at Tiger Stadium.

The night before, the state's best high school players will be scattered throughout the state, closing their regular seasons, many playing games with strong district-championship and postseason ramifications. Here are the best games involving players headed for major college programs:

Geismar Dutchtown (7-1) vs. Baton Rouge Catholic (6-2): The championship will be on the line in District 5-5A, which includes the largest city and suburban schools on the south side of Baton Rouge. Dutchtown, the alma mater of LSU's Eric Reid and Alabama's Eddie Lacy and Landon Collins, has another SEC-level recruit in Mississippi State commit Shelby Christy.

To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Rabalais looks ahead at LSU's FB schedule
Paul Finebaum and Scott Rabalais discuss the LSU 2015 football schedule.
VIDEO PLAYLIST video