Commentary

LSU has stranglehold on in-state talent

Originally Published: October 5, 2009
By Billy Tucker | Scouts Inc.
Although there is still plenty of speed and athleticism in Louisiana, the overall talent level is down a bit this year, particularly in terms of upper-echelon prospects. It may be unjust to compare this class with the one the Bayou State produced last year (seven ESPNU 150 prospects), but the class of 2010 still lacks the depth of four-star prospects we are accustomed to. Next year's class, which includes potential five-star athletes OT La'El Collins (Baton Rouge, La./Redemptorist), RB Jeremy Hill (Baton Rouge, La./Redemptorist), WR Jarvis Landry (Lutcher, La./Lutcher) and DT Anthony Johnson (New Orleans/O. Perry Walker), is already shaping up to be better.

However, this class boasts some strengths -- most notably at the skills positions. Trovon Reed (Thibodaux, La./Thibodaux) is a game-breaking receiver and is ranked No. 9 nationally at the position. But the defensive side of the ball, headed by the safety position, highlights the state this year. Eric Reid (Geismar, La./Dutchtown) and Tharold Simon (Eunice, La./Eunice) form one of the country's better state safety tandems. The high-point defenders are both top-10 positional prospects who are tall, rangy and athletic as well as physical and well-balanced versus the run and pass.

Both are headed to LSU, which has completely shut out surrounding states from a recruiting standpoint. The Tigers have commitments from seven of the state's top 10 prospects.

For a look at Louisiana's top player, a name to remember who might not be the highest-rated prospect and the programs doing the best job of recruiting this year, become an ESPN Insider. Insider

Billy Tucker

Scouts, Football Recruiting
• Recruiting coordinator for ESPN RecruitingNation.
• Nearly a decade of college coaching experience.
• Was recruiting coordinator at nationally-ranked Division II colleges.