LSU defensive line coach Ed Orgeron was absolutely giddy this week.
Not because his first season with the Tigers is about a month away. No, it was the collection of defensive linemen at LSU’s Elite Camp that had Orgeron envisioning a really bright future.
LSU hosted multiple five-star prospects and some of the top DL in the country, and Orgeron had a chance to spend time with all of them. LSU’s DL class already ranks among the nation’s best, and it’s poised to keep getting stronger.
It all starts with the No. 1 overall recruit in the country. Rashan Gary flew down with a coach and teammates, arriving Friday evening. LSU gave him an official vist-like experience as he had dinner with Coach O and a personal tour of Tiger Stadium. LSU was seen as an outsider in his recruitment until this week.
LSU knocked it out of the park, and though the Tigers aren’t approaching “favorite” status, they will likely receive one of his official visits and that puts them squarely in the running for his commitment.
Coach O had another five-star on campus this week in Rashard Lawrence. Though he didn’t work out, Lawrence spent multiple days around the facility, one of several trips to Baton Rouge he’s taken since the spring. LSU feels as confident as it always has in his recruitment, still expecting this battle to come down to the Tigers and Alabama.
Rashard Lawrence enjoyed this week's LSU visit
Though we didn’t get to see these two in action, there were several other major LSU targets that participated in the camp.
Raekwon stood head and shoulders (literally) above the rest. Coach O wanted to see exactly what Davis could do at this camp, and he exceeded expectations. Orgeron was raving about his ability and wants him more than ever. Though he’s committed to Alabama, no one expects him to ultimately land there. It’ll most likely be between LSU and Mississippi State for his signature come NSD.
Another potential nose tackle at this camp was Ross Blacklock. He camped at LSU for the second time this summer after earning an offer in June. He was equally impressive this time and should see increased attention from LSU moving forward. Texas A&M is the other team to watch in his recruitment, but the Tigers have a really good shot at taking this one from the Lone Star State.
Emmit Gooden was also impressive this week. LSU has been on him for a long time, and he made his third visit since the spring. He’s spoken highly of each trip, and LSU’s been a top contender throughout his recruitment. LSU likes him as a big defensive end that can also move inside, and he worked at both positions this week. If any school can steal Gooden from home-state Tennessee, it would be LSU.
Don’t forget about these two defensive linemen out of Florida — Shavar Manuel and Brian Burns.
Manuel shocked many this week at Florida’s camp when he announced his top three schools, and the list didn’t include Florida State. Most pegged the Seminoles as Manuel’s favorite until a recent visit to LSU seemingly shook things up. The Tigers received a lot of buzz after that trip, and LSU’s squarely in the running for this five-star.
LSU also has a good shot with Burns, who recently named the Tigers one of his three finalists. Georgia is probably the favorite to get him, but Coach O has put LSU in a very good position with him as well.
We haven’t even mentioned the in-state four-star Stephon Taylor, who didn’t visit this week but has LSU high on his list. Auburn is the biggest threat, but LSU still has plenty of confidence with Taylor.
Any player LSU adds from here would build on a solid foundation that already includes Ed Alexander, Glen Logan, Andre Anthony and Caleb Roddy. There should be more big-time recruits in this class by the end, and Orgeron is the perfect guy to reel them all in.
LSU's options endless among DL recruits
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