Confidence Levels: 2014 Prospects

Once a month until NSD, the TSD staff will clue you in to LSU's chances of landing its top targets. Using a 1-10 scale, Ben Love and Hunter Paniagua weigh in with confidence ratings for each one of the uncommitted recruits remaining at the top of LSU's board. Head inside to find out which prospects are most likely to end up with the Tigers.

Once a month until National Signing Day, TSD's Ben Love and Hunter Paniagua will provide their level of confidence that LSU will land its top uncommitted targets. Using a 1-10 scale, 10 being the highest, the TSD staff will clue you in on their feelings about each prospect's recruitment.

These numbers aren't just coming out of thin air either. Based on rumblings we've gotten from both the players and the LSU staff, these confidence levels should reflect how the Tigers feel at this point.

For now, here's the breakdown on 14 of LSU's top targets.

RB Leonard Fournette – 8.5 (Ben), 8.5 (Hunter)

While Fournette rarely divulges much about his recruitment, we're confident LSU will land his commitment. Alabama is the only significant contender at this point, but his comfort with LSU should win out. He spent two days on campus last week, and looked more like a current Tiger than a recruit.

WR Malachi Dupre – 8.0 (Ben), 8.5 (Hunter)

Dupre will be one of several of these targets whose courtship lasts into the winter. Dupre will take all five official visits, but LSU appears to be the overwhelming favorite. He's close with current commit Edward Paris, as well as the other in-state recruits. Though schools like Alabama and UCLA continue to impress him, LSU should land him in the end.

WR Devante Noil – 9.5 (Ben), 9.5 (Hunter)

While Noil led his Edna Karr 7-on-7 team to a tournament title last week on LSU's campus, he had every Tiger coach watching his performance. That shows the kind of attention LSU has given him, and the type of love that points him toward the Tigers. Though he maintains an even top four of LSU, USC, Florida and Texas A&M, the Tigers shouldn't worry much about his commitment.

WR Trey Quinn – 5.5 (Ben), 6.5 (Hunter)

Though Quinn has seemingly been on commit watch all summer, we should know soon where he ends up. Quinn begins fall practices the first week of August, and he hopes to have a final decision before then. While it would appear that other schools are looking up at LSU, some programs, mostly Clemson, are still making a strong case. Quinn's decision is still very much in the air, but the comfort of LSU should be too much to pass up.

WR Saeed Blacknall – 7.5 (Ben), 6.0 (Hunter)

Two weeks ago, Blacknall seemed like a lock to end up at LSU, but now things have changed. While the Tigers certainly aren't out of it, he seems to have taken a step back in his recruitment, reopening his eyes to other suitors. His trip to Alabama stood out, and with LSU already targeting so many other elite WRs, he wants to make sure he finds his best fit. We still think LSU is the favorite, but it's not as certain as it once was.

OT Cameron Robinson – 4.5 (Ben), 5.5 (Hunter)

We've said for months that Robinson's recruitment is a coin flip, and that's evident in our confidence levels. Ben gives Alabama the slight edge, while I think the Tigers made up positive ground at the Elite Camp. Robinson's strong relationship with Coach Studrawa was clear, but the allure of Alabama may be too much for him to pass up. Robinson's is still one that's far too close to call.

DE Davon Godchaux – 8.5 (Ben), 9.5 (Hunter)

Though word leaked out last week that Godchaux had committed to LSU, that turned out to not be the case — yet. That kind of news doesn't spread without any real leanings, and signs point to Godchaux ending up at LSU. He claims he'll wait until December 28 to announce his commitment. Whether or not he lasts that long, he should be a Tiger at day's end.

DE Gerald Willis – 9.5 (Ben), 9.5 (Hunter)

Like his Edna Karr teammate, Willis maintains an even group of top schools, Florida and Texas A&M being the primary competition. He plans to take official visits to some of his favorites then announce at the Under-Armour game along with several other in-state prospects. But as with the others, LSU has too much for Willis to pass up, and we're confident LSU gets the call.

DT Garrald McDowell – 8.0 (Ben), 6.5 (Hunter)

Ben is a bit more confident in LSU landing McDowell, though it's safe to say the Tigers are the favorite. McDowell was clear he wanted that LSU offer, and it seemed it was only a matter of time until he committed. But Ole Miss and Arkansas are still coming on strong, and McDowell praised his recent trip to Oxford. We should know soon though as he expects to commit before his senior season.

LB Clifton Garrett – 8.0 (Ben), 8.5 (Hunter)

Garrett hasn't kept it a secret that LSU is his favorite. No school has been able to surpass the Tigers since they offered earlier this year, and it would take something drastic for that to change. Though Ole Miss, Tennessee and Florida all seem like competitors, they don't seem to stack up for Garrett. He expects to make multiple trips to LSU this fall, and that should tell you all you need to know about his recruitment.

LB Kenny Young – 3.5 (Ben), 4.0 (Hunter)

Young's appearance and exceptional performance at camp last week seemingly renewed hope that there's room for him in the LSU class. But Young rarely shows the same kind of love for LSU that other in-state prospects do, causing most to think he heads elsewhere. He will give all his suitors a fair shake though, so don't rule out LSU, but it's hard to consider them a favorite at this point.

CB Tony Brown – 7.5 (Ben), 8.0 (Hunter)

Brown never admits a favorite, but LSU has been it for quite some time. He's been high on the Tigers since they started recruiting him as a freshman, and the allure of running for LSU's track program certainly appeals to the nationally-recognized hurdler. Add in his sister (though her enrollment has reportedly been delayed by the NCAA Clearinghouse) and it should only be a matter of time until Brown makes the call for LSU.

S Laurence Jones– 6.5 (Ben), 4.5 (Hunter)

Ben's take: It's been easy for the past few months to lump the two North Louisiana five stars together, but I think there's a better chance Hootie Jones ends up in Baton Rouge than Cam Robinson. There seems to be positive momentum with LSU for Jones, especially coming from his mother and relationship with John Diarse, even if there isn't a lot said publicly to that end. I'm not ready to declare the Tigers a slam-dunk favorite, but I do think they currently lead for the Neville star's services.

Hunter's take: Though it was obviously positive for LSU to get Jones on campus for camp last week, he didn't seem to show the same level of love that the other in-state prospects did. As I said with Robinson, it's not much more than a coin flip at this point, but I still think Alabama has a slight lead here. Louisiana comfort could win out in the end, but the Tide have a strong appeal for Jones, and it doesn't seem hard to believe he winds up there.

S Santos Ramirez – 6.0 (Ben), 6.0 (Hunter)

If this was only about Ramirez's commitment, both Ben and I would have him at a 10.0. But his recruitment has more to do with LSU having room for him. He seems to be in a holding pattern for now, and our sources on the LSU side have said it will likely come down to numbers. If LSU misses on some of these names above, Ramirez seems to be the next in line for that scholarship. If there's room for him, he'll be a member of this class.


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