ADAMS THE MAIN FOCUS AT SAFETY
When it comes to safety, everything revolves around one prospect. For more than the last month, LSU has made Jamal Adams its No. 1 priority at that position and the Tigers aren't backing off that now. Securing his commitment remains the primary goal for LSU and everything else at safety remains on hold. The Tigers won't have to wait long though as he's set to announce at the Under-Armour All-American Game on Jan. 2.
As we enter the final stretch of his recruitment, LSU is still very optimistic about its chances of landing the five-star safety. But so are the Florida Gators, who remain LSU's strongest competition. The Tigers' sales pitch has revolved around giving Adams early playing time at a position in which LSU desperately needs help, and that's paid off so far. But the primary advantage LSU has against Florida with Adams is coaching stability.
It's not a secret that Adams' godfather is Florida WR coach Joker Phillips, and that relationship played a big part in his early interest in the Gators. But with so much uncertainty in the future of Will Muschamp and his coaching staff, Adams has taken notice and that stability LSU's shown is really helping the Tigers. That could be enough for the Tigers to win out, but Florida's really banking on that relationship with Adams to come through in the end.
With both schools optimistic about their chances, that's certainly creating some drama leading up to his announcement. Though LSU has been trending in the right direction for quite some time, nothing is certain at this point and for that reason, LSU's still doing everything it can to secure Adams' pledge.
HOOTIE'S IN A HOLDING PATTERN
That being said, contact this past week between LSU and Hootie has been minimal, and it's not likely that anything picks up until after Jan. 2. But just because there hasn't been much contact doesn't mean LSU isn't interested. Landing Hootie would provide LSU with a big feather in its cap against Alabama and it would help restore some of the stability in the Monroe area. The perception boost alone would be enough to warrant taking Hootie, not to mention that he's considered one of the top safeties in the nation.
But LSU does consider Adams to be the higher priority, so the Tigers are likely expecting some patience out of Hootie. Though he is feeling the time crunch as an early enrollee, Hootie will have time to lock in everything with LSU after Jan. 2. But in the meantime, Ole Miss is making a push. It's still early in that relationship, but with Hootie's friend C.J. Hampton "reaffirming his commitment" to Ole Miss on Friday, that's a good start for the Rebels. The spring semester at Ole Miss doesn't begin until after the dead period, so Hootie would have time to take an official visit there if the interest is genuine.
But based on all the information to this point, it would be a surprise for Ole Miss to jump LSU. It's just a waiting game, and there are still plenty more twists and turns this story can take in the next month.
There still remain some dominoes to fall at cornerback, but the good news for LSU is that the big one's still expected to drop on Jan. 2. After Tony Brown left his official visit to LSU a couple weeks back, the general feeling was that he'd announce along with the other prospects at the Under-Armour game. As time's gone on, that appears to be the most likely result, and there's little doubt as to whom he'll select. LSU has always been considered the favorite, and there's no reason to think that's changed.
Brown's been LSU's No. 1 priority at CB throughout his recruitment, and the staff would likely be content if he's the final CB they land in this class. That being said, the Tigers remain in the picture for Adoree Jackson as well, and they're still making a push to add him. LSU was in a strong position after his official visit, but that was back in October, and some of that post-visit adoration has seemed to wear off.
Florida's been picking up a lot of steam lately, and they're hoping that they bring him in for his fifth and final official visit. If that happens, the Gators will likely become the favorite to land his commitment on National Signing Day. The Gators originally recruited Jackson as an offensive player, but with a new offensive coordinator coming in, Florida's exact plans for him are uncertain right now, but he is still a major priority for them. Jackson, an aspiring Olympic hurdler, really likes the Florida track program, and that's been a big pitch for Florida.
But a lot of the same selling points for Florida also apply for LSU. They'll hope to remain in the picture, but right now Florida has the most momentum.