Signee Update: Frank Herron

One of the top defensive ends in the country in 2013, Frank Herron comes to LSU at a time of need for the Tigers at the position. How quickly can he see the field and what kind of impact can Herron have? TSD answers those questions inside.

The next wave of LSU Tigers will report to campus this Friday, June 7, for the beginning of a summer session that will include college course work as well as workouts with strength and conditioning coach Tommy Moffitt.

Among that crowd is Frank Herron. The four-star defensive end from Memphis, rated the country's No. 5 player at his position by Scout, was one of the most highly touted players in the Tigers' 2013 class.

Here is a detailed look at how Herron came to be a Tiger and how he projects in year one wearing the purple and gold.

Recruiting Rewind

Herron was a well-known commodity exiting his junior season. The Memphis Central player was on the radar of just about every school in the south, from Clemson and South Carolina to Miami to Texas. He set his announcement for May 29, 2012, on the heels of the Memphis NFTC. At that time Herron had set a final five list of Clemson, LSU, Memphis, Mississippi State and Tennessee.

He chose LSU, and quickly celebrated that decision by trekking to Baton Rouge for the Tigers' first camp of the 2012 summer in early June. Herron returned to the LSU campus for an unofficial visit during the weekend of the Alabama game. He then took his official visit the last weekend in January. But, in a surprise twist, Herron visited Texas the weekend before National Signing Day, stirring fear in many. Ultimately it proved to be nothing, and the Tigers landed Herron on NSD. John Chavis was his primary recruiter, but future position coach Brick Haley was also heavily involved in Herron's recruitment.

Skills Analysis

At 6-foot-5 and 245 pounds, Herron brings a lot of size to the table before he even gets the full Moffitt treatment. When you consider he also runs a 4.7 40-yard dash, there's a lot of athleticism and giddy-up to go with the obvious size for Herron. All this was enough for Scout to bump him up from the No. 122 to No. 66 overall player in America in our final Top 100 rankings.

The only real downside to Herron at this point is that he is considered a raw player and will require a good bit of technique development. He fits best as a strongside defensive end, possessing the frame and muscle to defend well against the run. Herron does have a good first step and can be a very disruptive player behind the line of scrimmage, even if he's not labeled as a traditional speed pass rusher. It may take a year or two before he reaches his potential, but Herron's ceiling is extremely high.

Freshman Impact

Herron was the highest-rated recruit at LSU's biggest position of need on the entire field on either side of the ball for 2013. So, yeah, you could say he's an instant-impact candidate. Perhaps more than any other incoming defender (with the possible exceptions of corner Tre'Davious White and fellow end Tashawn Bower), Herron is expected to compete for time right away. Behind Jermauria Rasco, Jordan Allen and Danielle Hunter, there's currently nobody who's cemented a spot in the two-deep rotation at end.

Look for Herron and Bower to go head-to-head this August to determine who will earn that spot. Both, of course, are likely to see the field in 2013, with a redshirt almost impossible to conceive given the Tigers' lack of depth. Bower is more in the pass-rushing mold, so he may have his uses on third downs. Herron, however, can be more of an every-down player. It wouldn't be a stretch to predict double-digit tackles, with a few for loss, from Herron as a true freshmen.


Leading up until June 7, the day when signees report, TSD is breaking down each one with analysis and the latest on their preparation for LSU. In case you missed any of our previous updates, the full list is below:

DE Michael Patterson
DE Lewis Neal
DE Tashawn Bower
WR Kevin Spears
OL K.J. Malone
CB Tre'Davious White
LB Kendell Beckwith
DEF Melvin Jones
OG Josh Boutte
DT Greg Gilmore

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