Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Oklahoma Sooners [Print without images]

Sunday, August 4, 2013
ESPN 300 DB decommits from LSU

By William Wilkerson



For the first time in nearly 13 months, ESPN 300 cornerback Chris Hardeman (Houston/Alief Taylor) is an uncommitted prospect.

Hardeman had been committed to LSU since July 16, 2012, but decommitted on Sunday, according to his father, Cedric Hardeman.

He wouldn’t get into specifics, saying there were just some things the his son didn’t feel comfortable with.

“It’s funny because I am reading some things saying he decommitted because of the people they had coming in,” Cedric Hardeman said. “That’s far from the truth because he helped recruit all the guys that are there. Chris wants to win. He understands that it takes great players to win. He’s willing to compete. That’s far from the issue.”

Cedric Hardeman said a lot of it had to do with Chris coming to terms with what was really important to him. Those priorities have changed since he committed last year.

“For him, being an early commit, I wanted him to always keep an open mind to everything,” his father said. “Going through the process early, there are certain things that you have on the list that you are having to wait on, that you hold a higher priority on. Him going through the process and having experienced things, and talking with guys he knows that are playing college ball, I think the weight he put on certain things may have changed a little bit. In doing so, you kind of look at a school a little different because your outlook is a little different.”

Hardeman, the No. 285 player and No. 23 cornerback in the ESPN 300, isn’t wasting any time contemplating what to do next. His father said he and teammate Keenen Brown, a three-star wide receiver, will visit Oklahoma and Oklahoma State next weekend.

“Right now we are at ground zero, but we’re not,” Cedric said. “Chris is blessed to be in a situation where he is at a school that has had kids play ball at a lot of places. That’s allowed him to have certain relationships with coaches throughout the process. He’s open and done a pretty good job of keeping minimal, but some contact with certain schools.”

Hardeman also has offers from the likes of Baylor, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Mississippi State, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Ole Miss, Tennessee, Texas A&M and UCLA.

His father said that he wasn’t sure if his son was going to take all of his official visits, but did say some were likely in store.

“I know he would like to take some visits,” he said. “The ultimate goal for him is to find a home and find a place he can be successful on and off the field. Now he knows things that are important to him.”

As for LSU, the Tigers are now without a cornerback commitment. They do, however, have pledges from ESPN 300 safety Edward Paris Jr. (Arlington, Texas/Timberview) and three-star safety John Battle IV (Hallandale Beach, Fla./Hallandale). LSU also is considered the favorite for ESPN 300 prospect Tony Brown (Beaumont, Texas/Ozen), the fourth-ranked cornerback in the country.