Where They Stand: A&M Weekend

LSU has assembled a major recruiting weekend for the Tigers' showdown with Texas A&M. With many of the nation's best prospects expected to be in Tiger Stadium, TSD's Hunter Paniagua has all the news and notes to let you know where LSU stands with each of its top targets heading into the weekend.

LSU hasn't had a meaningful home game in more than a month — sorry, Furman, but the Paladins didn't exactly bring the excitement to Tiger Stadium. But with a big-time opponent coming into Death Valley this weekend, the LSU coaching staff has assembled an elite list of recruits that are expected to take in the contest against Texas A&M.

You can get the complete list of recruits expected for the game Saturday by clicking the link below:

To set the scene for the big recruiting weekend, TSD's Hunter Paniagua has all the news, notes, tidbits and scoop on all the major prospects heading to Baton Rouge.


With less than two weeks remaining until he makes his decision official, Hootie Jones will take an official visit to Baton Rouge this weekend with his mother. Unlike his trip to Tuscaloosa two weeks ago, Hootie's mother will join him on this visit and get the full rundown of what LSU has to offer. Most importantly, LSU will show off the academic side of the program, which is a major factor for Hootie's mother, and could be something that sets LSU apart from Alabama.

Does LSU lead for Hootie Jones?
As the days until Dec. 2 count down, all signs continue to point toward LSU having an advantage. Sources indicate that Hootie has not yet made a final decision, but that LSU does have the edge on Alabama. Getting him on an official visit before his announcement will only help boost LSU's standing in his recruitment, and should be the final piece to secure his commitment.

Hootie has not yet set an official visit to Tuscaloosa, though the Alabama staff are optimistic they can get him on campus once more, though it will likely have to happen after he makes his commitment. His recruitment certainly won't end until he sets foot on somebody's campus, but everything continues to look positive for LSU looking forward to that Dec. 2 decision date.


A big story from the last two weeks has been LSU's reemergence as a contender for JuCo WR D'haquille Williams now that he's set to make an official visit this weekend. The five-star prospect originally committed to LSU back in May but dropped his pledge 11 days later. Two months later he made a commitment to Auburn, and at the time, sources at LSU said they were content letting him leave because of the crop of high school receivers they were expecting to land.

While nothing has changed for guys like Malachi Dupre and Devante Noil, LSU has reentered the picture for Williams with hopes that he can ease the offense's transition period next season. With Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham likely heading for the NFL, the Tigers could certainly use a developed and experienced weapon next season to help the new quarterback, whether it be Anthony Jennings or Brandon Harris.

Williams remains committed to Auburn heading into this weekend, but he has said publicly that LSU would be the one school that could pull him away from the Plains. We'll find out more after this weekend where LSU stands, but the appeal of returning home might be enough for the Tigers to steal Williams back from Auburn.

LSU gets another chance to impress Clifton Garrett

The nation's No. 1 MLB didn't make it a secret that LSU blew him away when he visited in April for the Spring Game. Garrett quickly launched LSU to the top of his list, and the Tigers have remained there in the seven months since. The Tigers will get another chance to impress both Garrett and his parents, who didn't make the first visit, when the family arrives for an official visit on Friday.

Impressing the parents will be the main priority for the coaching staff, and that shouldn't be an issue as they've built a strong relationship with Garrett's parents over the phone during his recruitment. Assuming LSU leaves a similar impression as it did on Garrett's first visit, all expectations are that he announces for the Tigers during the U.S. Army All-American Game in January.

But LSU does have competition. Ole Miss, Florida and Tennessee all felt good about where they left things with Garrett after his official visits to those campuses. Garrett says for now that all four schools are equal, but LSU will get the final chance to set itself apart this weekend.


Frank Iheanacho wasn't on many school's radar before this season started. The 6-foot-7 prospect spent his junior year on the basketball court instead of the football field, but once he returned to the gridiron, schools took notice. Texas A&M and LSU were two of the first schools to come through with offers, and he'll see both in-person this weekend during his official visit to Baton Rouge.

Both LSU and A&M are in on Frank Iheanacho
This will mark Iheanacho's first official visit, though he did take an unofficial to College Station on Oct. 19 for the Aggies' loss to Auburn. Most people believe that A&M is the early leader for Iheanacho's commitment, and it's probably not a coincidence that this is the weekend he chose to check out Baton Rouge. It's also been reported that the Aggies are recruiting him more as a wide receiver than a tight end, which has been a big selling point for them.

But Cam Cameron is redefining the tight end's role at LSU. With guys like Desean Smith and Jacory Washington, it's obvious which direction LSU is heading with that position, and Iheanacho certainly fits that mold. He's said that he'll take his time with his recruitment, and LSU likely will wait to press as TE isn't a major position of need right now. But this weekend will provide them a chance to make a strong impression to solidify their place in his recruitment until the end.


One big name that is not expected to be in Baton Rouge this weekend is Cameron Robinson. Though he had mentioned the possibility of making the trip, it appears he'll instead stay home, and LSU can likely write off its chances of flipping him from Alabama. Though the five-star lineman genuinely entertained LSU assistant Brick Haley's attempts, Robinson seems to grow firmer by the day with his commitment to Alabama.

Elijah Rodriguez could be LSU's next OL target
With the door on Robinson likely closing, as it has with targets Damien Mama and David Sharpe, LSU must now head in a new direction if it hopes to add a third offensive lineman in this class. Right now, the name near the top of the list is Elijah Rodriguez, a Colorado commit from the Houston area. Rodriguez will take an unofficial visit to Baton Rouge this weekend to experience the campus and see if LSU's worthy of consideration. He remains committed to the Buffaloes, but he's admitted that he's open to other opportunities, and LSU is keeping a close eye on him. Greg Studrawa was in Houston recently to get a firsthand look at him, and this weekend will be big for LSU's continued evaluation. The Tigers would like to add another OL in 2014, but they aren't going to reach on someone that they aren't completely sold on. That being said, keep an eye on Rodriguez, and we should know more after this weekend.

A 2015 prospect that LSU discovered at camp will also be on campus this weekend. Tyler Higby (Houston Kinkaid) will return to Baton Rouge after landing an offer in July. Though LSU hadn't recruited Higby at the time, the early three-star prospect impressed Studrawa enough to merit consideration. Higby will arrive on Friday for a campus tour then take in the game on Saturday. He along with Richie Petitbon — who is expected to visit next week — are some of the early names at the top of LSU's OL board for 2015.


The nation's No. 1 CB will make another unofficial visit to LSU this weekend, his third of the season. Set to be an early enrollee, Brown's entering the final couple months of his recruitment, and the five-star prospect has already taken three official visits (Ohio State, Alabama and Texas). Brown has said he wanted to take his officials before making a final decision, so he definitely appears to be entering the final stretch.

Everything on LSU's end remains positive. The Tigers are extremely confident they'll land his pledge, whenever that may come, and opposing schools don't seem to like their chances of stealing him from LSU. With no decision date set, a commitment from Brown could likely come any time in the next two months, and LSU will get another chance to solidify its standing this weekend.

LSU still remains confident in landing Leonard Fournette

Little has changed with LSU's remaining in-state targets. Guys like Leonard Fournette, Malachi Dupre, Gerald Willis and Speedy Noil are all expected to be in Tiger Stadium again on Saturday for unofficial visits. It's always good for LSU to get this group together and comfortable around each other and the program. Particularly for someone like Fournette, who did have a favorable experience at Alabama two weeks ago.

While LSU remains in good shape, it's still important for LSU to follow up that Alabama trip with a positive one in Baton Rouge. The Tigers shouldn't have any problem with that though, as the party atmosphere created by getting all these kids together is an easy sell for the home team.


It's never too early to start looking ahead to the next classes of elite recruits coming out of Louisiana. LSU will attract some of the state's best for visits this weekend, including guys like Tyron Johnson, Devin White, Mykel Jones and more. LSU would love to get some of these up-and-comers on campus as much as possible, and this will provide them with another opportunity to show off LSU's gameday atmosphere.


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