The LSU Tigers will part with sitting head coach Johnny Jones following the completion of SEC Tournament. LSU has had its struggles the last two years under Jones’ leadership, but the question is how good of a recruiting job is the one in Baton Rouge.
On the football side of things LSU is one of the truly elite recruiting jobs in the country, but that isn’t the case in basketball. With that said, LSU is a very good job for recruiting on the hoops side.
At LSU you have a good, not great, base with which to recruit from. Typically the state will provide a handful of high-major recruits, and within that multiple top 100 prospects per year. On top of that, many of the in-state recruits are encouraged to stay in the Deep South, and tend to be predisposed to going to LSU.
Because of that you should have a pretty good start to any recruiting class, which is going to be the lifeblood for success at LSU.
Also one major factor working in LSU’s favor is the city of Houston. Houston is one of the top 10 areas overall for high school basketball talent, and it is only four hours from Baton Rouge.
Because it is either a short drive or a very quick, and inexpensive direct flight, it is easy for LSU to be a presence within the city. Also because Houston is so vast and produces so many top level prospects, many are going to leave the state or go un-recruited by schools such as Texas A&M and Texas.
If there is a negative for LSU it is that while the talent base in the local area with which to work is quite good, it can be tricky to navigate. A lot of intense recruiting battles tend to take place in the Deep South and with coaches such as Ben Howland at Mississippi State, Billy Kennedy at Texas A&M, Scott Drew at Baylor, and Bruce Pearl at Auburn, recruiting in the area has become more difficult than ever.
Still the LSU job is a good one from a recruiting perspective because you should be able to bring talent in. Clearly Jones and his staff were able to get players. They had NBA players such as Ben Simmons and Jordan Mickey to go along with highly rated recruits like Antonio Blakeney.
While the job isn’t quite the recruiting goldmine that the football position is, there is still plenty of basketball talent to be had in the state and the surrounding areas along with good facilities and a nice campus to sell to potential prospects.