Below are Hunter Paniagua’s final predictions for what will happen on NSD. We break down what to expect from six top targets still on the board, and another LSU commit that is still considering a flip. We’ve also got the schedule of when each announcement will take place (all times Central), so this should give you a proper preview of the big day.
So without any further ado, here are the predictions!
When: 7 a.m.
Finalists: Ohio State, Auburn, LSU
Torrance Gibson will kick off the festivities with an early-morning announcement. We’ll find out whether he plans to stick with the Buckeyes or flip to Auburn or LSU. The two Tigers are legitimate threats. Auburn provides him a system that best fits his athleticism, and Gibson thinks LSU can best mold him into an NFL quarterback. But he’s been committed to Ohio State for a long time, and his best relationship is with Urban Meyer. It wouldn’t be a total shock to see him go elsewhere, but my prediction has him staying with Ohio State.
Prediction: Ohio State
When: 8:15 a.m.
Finalists: LSU, Arkansas
I’m pegging Weathersby to be the first new addition to LSU’s 2015 class on Wednesday. We’ve seen the Tigers surge to the front since his official visit to Baton Rouge the weekend of Jan. 23. At the time he left that visit, he was legitimately torn between LSU and Arkansas. But LSU’s done well to separate itself, thanks to the efforts by his two lead recruiters — Bradley Dale Peveto and Jeff Grimes. I expect the proximity to home to be one of the bigger factors in his decision, and he’s someone that can realistically factor in the two-deep early in his career. I’m expecting this four-star prospect to sign with LSU on NSD.
When: 8:30 a.m.
Finalists: Alabama, LSU
Charlot’s recruitment has been hotly contested between LSU and Alabama since last summer. That’s when the Tigers came through with an offer despite him being committed to the Tide. LSU made a big push through the fall, and he eventually dropped his Alabama commitment while on an official visit to LSU. But once we exited the last dead period, we saw the momentum shift back to Alabama. The Crimson Tide have a much more inviting depth chart, and he’s grown more comfortable with the idea of leaving home. I expect him to rejoin Alabama’s class on Wednesday.
When: 9:30 a.m.
Finalists: LSU, Florida
Though I expect LSU to miss on one receiver, I do think they’ll land one about an hour later. Derrick Dillon has never officially “decommitted” from Florida through these final few months, but LSU’s been considered the team to beat for quite some time. Though LSU first started recruiting him as a cornerback, they eventually came around to him as a wide receiver after a strong senior season. That really pushed the Tigers to the top as staying close to home is important. They’ve been the clear favorite ever since they showed Dillon how he’d fit in the offense, and I expect him to make it official on NSD.
LB Leo Lewis
When: 10:30 a.m.
Finalists: Mississippi State, LSU, Ole Miss
UPDATE (2/4 5:30 a.m.): TSD received word early Wednesday morning from a very good source on the LSU side that said Leo Lewis would not sign with the Tigers. That would leave all signs pointing toward Mississippi State. Premium members can get more information HERE. We have changed our prediction to Mississippi State.
ORIGINAL POST: Of all the impending announcements, this is the one that I feel least confident about. And I’m not alone. Anyone that tries to pretend they know exactly where he’s going is probably lying. That’s just how wide open it is right now. But LSU likes its chances, and the Tigers do have a lot of buzz. That peaked this past weekend when he decommitted from Ole Miss while on an official visit to LSU. Frank Wilson, Ed Orgeron and Kevin Steele have all combined to sell Lewis on coming to LSU, and we’re starting to feel it’s paid off. Mississippi State is still a very legitimate option. They’re confident as well, and they have been for a long time. You’d also be a fool to believe that Ole Miss is out of the running. Lewis can literally pick any of these three schools, and nobody would be surprised. But I’m going with LSU to ride this late momentum to the finish line.
Prediction: Mississippi State (changed 2/4, 5:30 a.m.)
When: 12:30 p.m.
Finalists: LSU, Texas
Nick Brossette is the only LSU commit still at risk for a late flip. He was one of three running backs that Texas was recruiting to fill two spots. Texas was a legitimate threat earlier in this cycle, but we started to see some of the shine wear off recently. LSU had an in-home visit with him late last week and left with the impression that Brossette would sign with the Tigers. From there it seemed like Texas had decided to focus all its remaining effort on the other two backs. But that took a different turn Monday when reports surfaced that one of those backs — Sotonye Jamabo — had made a decision to go to UCLA instead. Did that lead to Texas reigniting its heat on Brossette? I’m not certain about that, but I am very confident that he’ll stick to his commitment and sign with LSU on Wednesday.
When: 12:35 p.m.
Finalists: Stanford, Notre Dame, LSU
Justin Reid, Eric Reid’s younger brother, took official visits to each of his three finalists over the final month. His last stop was to LSU, who had made a bigger push for him as NSD drew closer. Reid was mostly a fringe prospect for the Tigers, one without a sure spot depending on how the numbers played out. Now that we’re here, we do expect LSU to have room available for Reid, though we’re not certain he takes it. Stanford is the team to beat, and he’s been a big priority for them through most of this cycle. The academic prestige is a factor as well, and Palo Alto’s proximity to his brother in San Francisco is another big bonus. I expect him to choose the West Coast and sign with Stanford.
Premium members, we want to hear from you. Where do you think these recruits will land on NSD? Offer up your own predictions on the TSD Message Board at the link below.