Click the link below to access the transcript on the TSD Message Board so you can check out all the latest as the recruiting front is really heating up the closer we get to National Signing Day.
LSU received some surprising news on Wednesday afternoon when Laurence Jones (aka Hootie) dropped his relatively fresh commitment to Alabama because he needed more time to make a decision.
This development is obviously positive for the Tigers, who now find themselves in a great position to steal back the four-star safety from Monroe, according to multiple sources. One of Hootie's first calls after the decommitment was to LSU DL coach Brick Haley, who has taken over LSU's recruiting efforts in Northeast Louisiana, and recruiting coordinator Frank Wilson.
LSU's bowl practices prevented the two parties from having an in-depth conversation, but sources did say Hootie would talk more with the coaches on Wednesday night. TSD is still awaiting some details on where things stand as of Thursday morning, but all indications after Hootie dropped his commitment are that LSU is the likeliest destination.
Hootie decommitted from Alabama days after returning from an official visit to Tuscaloosa, which sources have said did not go as well as the Tide expected. Because schools are currently in a month-long dead period, that will prevent Hootie from making any visits before he's set to enroll at his college of choice in mid-January.
Sources have indicated that Hootie has some interest in Ole Miss, but the dead period will prevent the Rebels from making the complete sales pitch. That interest in Ole Miss likely stems from Hootie's relationship with C.J. Hampton, who made an early pledge to the Rebels but has since opened up his recruitment. The feeling is that Hampton will ultimately stick with his commitment to Ole Miss and he's likely working to get Hootie to join him in Oxford.
That being said, LSU has the most advantageous position at this point, but the Tigers will need to tread lightly moving forward. Since Hootie committed to Alabama, LSU has made a strong impression on five-star safety Jamal Adams. Sources have said the Tigers currently lead for Adams, and he'll announce a final decision at the Under-Armour game on Jan. 2.
LSU's made Adams the No. 1 priority at safety in recent weeks, and they'll want to be sure they don't jeopardize that by getting back in the Hootie sweepstakes. But because Adams projects more as a free safety and Hootie more as a strong safety, there shouldn't be much conflict between the two, and LSU will try to make a move for both.
But if there's one thing we've learned throughout this recruitment it's that nothing is certain. This is still a very fluid situation, so stick with TSD as more details are sure to arise in the coming days. Be sure to check the TSD Message Board by clicking the link below for all the latest.