Rae Sykes Says LSU is On Top

Rae Sykes, a defensive end out of Alcoa, Tenn., is one of the top defensive linemen in the South and he is keeping a close eye on LSU when looking at where he will play at the next level.

Last season, Rae Sykes played an integral part in Alcoa's state championship run, recording 132 tackles and 10 sacks on the season.


The 4-star defensive end currently holds a handful of scholarship offers from schools around the South but says there are five schools that he's interested in.


"My favorites are LSU, Florida State, Miami, Tennessee and Clemson," he said. "They've all offered me scholarships but I would say that LSU is probably the leader right now. But they are all pretty close."


One thing that has gotten Sykes so much attention from college programs is his speed.


The 6-4, 240-pounder claims a 4.67 time in the 40, and says coaches have told him he is quick off the ball and gets to the quarterback fast.


One of the coaches keeping in contact with Scout.com's No. 22 rated defensive end in the country is LSU offensive line coach Stacy Searels.


Sykes said he and Searels talked last week and was not short on positive things to say about the Tiger program.

"LSU's D-line is awesome." he said, "I know they are going to be graduating several ends this year, so hopefully if I come in and work hard, I can get a spot on the line."


What has his contact with the LSU staff been like?


"They have coaches like no other school," he said, "I've really liked talking to coach Searels, and I want to talk to coach Miles again. When I went down there for camp I got to spend a lot of time with coach (Bo) Pelini and coach (Doug) Mallory too and they are real cool."


Sykes first spoke to coach Miles in the summer of '05 when he came to Baton Rouge to visit shortly after Miles arrived in Baton Rouge. He says that he plans on taking an official visit to LSU, and hopes to be able to talk to the coaches more at that point, though it likely will not be until after the season due to traveling distance.


In addition to LSU, Sykes is planning on making official visits to Tennessee and Florida State, where friend and former teammate Brandon Warren now plays, though he does not know when he will make his visits, but said that he probably will not go anywhere until the season ends.


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