Coach's corner: Hayden Rettig

Find out more about LSU's 2013 quarterback commitment: Hayden Rettig.

As the quarterback dominos began to fall over the past month, LSU quarterbacks coach Steve Kragthorpe broadened his range of focus, which brought him to Los Angeles for a look at Cathedral College Prep quarterback Hayden Rettig.

That was three weeks ago.

Last Tuesday, Rettig shocked recruitniks across the map when he committed to the Tigers without having ever visited Baton Rouge.

"He was ready to go ahead and end things, because he saw LSU as the perfect fit for what he wanted to do," Cathedral College Prep coach Kevin Pearson said. "They impressed him in a pretty short amount of time."

Rettig also impressed the LSU staff, particularly when Kragthorpe visited Los Angeles to see Rettig throw in person.

Like most coaches that have made their way through the halls at Cathedral this spring, Kragthrope stayed beyond his anticipated visit time.

"Coach Kragthorpe came to the school and watched practice, then he stuck around after and saw (Rettig) throw some more," Pearson said. "I think that's when LSU really got interested, because Hayden looked really sharp.

"Coach Kragthorpe said (Rettig) was one of the best prospects he's seen in the 2013 class, and I've heard that from a lot of coaches that have come through here. Had he not gotten injured, I think Hayden would have offers from most every school in the country."

Rettig suffered a torn ACL in week two of his junior campaign last fall, which cut short the most important stretch of games for one of the West Coast's top quarterback prospects.

"He didn't even play in two full games, so there was a lot of concern with coaches as to where he stood with his recovery," Pearson said. "But once Coach Kragthorpe saw him in person, he knew Hayden was fully recovered. He's back to 100-percent health and looks as good as ever."

Kragthorpe and Rettig stayed in constant contact over the past two weeks, and Rettig eventually found himself in conversation with LSU coach Les Miles.

When Miles phoned Rettig last Monday, the topic turned to scholarships. Soon after, Miles offered Rettig a chance to join the Tigers as the first quarterback addition in the 2013 class.

Before the call ended, Rettig was committed to LSU.

"It made sense for him to go ahead and commit," Pearson said. "He is planning on being in Baton Rouge a few days later, but he wanted to go ahead and commit because he felt the time was right.

"LSU made sense."

With an offer sheet well into the double-digits, Pearson said Rettig's decision was made easier through the conversations the four-star quarterback prospect had with Kragthorpe.

"I think Hayden really likes the idea of playing in the SEC and fitting into that LSU system, because he the prototypical pro-style passer," Pearson said. "That system will suit him well over there, because he can make throws when he has to instead of throwing it 60 times a game.

"He liked Washington State a lot because of Mike Leach and his offense, but Coach Kragthorpe convinced him that the pro-style system, especially at LSU, is one he can thrive in and win championships in.

"At LSU, you will have success.

"And Hayden knows it's not all about big numbers. He will be on point when he is called upon."

As a prospect, Pearson said there aren't many recruits in the country with Rettig's arm strength, his biggest attractor when it comes to coaches falling in love with the rising senior.

"He has a big arm, and that's the thing people love," he said. "When he was a freshman he had an arm that you knew would get him to Saturday. Now people say he is an NFL type guy."

With a brother playing quarterback at Boston College, Rettig is concerned little by distance, which should bode well in LSU's bid to keep the California quarterback locked up through signing day next February.

"He wasn't trying to stay here," Pearson said. "That wasn't important to him. He was trying to find the place that suited him well.

"We are really proud of him. It's a great thing to have a California kid go to a program like LSU."

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