It's Friday and that means it's time for another edition of the Tiger Wrap.
This week Sonny will give you the latest on the quarterbacks on LSU's recruiting board along with the latest on Clarence Ward, Raymond Henderson, Gary Riggs, Gabe McKenzie, Josh McNeil, Ryan Reynolds, DeMarcus Granger, Rudy Odum and more.
Over the past week I have been
flooded with requests for news on the quarterbacks Nick Saban
is pursuing for the Class of 2005. The three players Tiger fans seem most
interested in are Ryan Perrilloux, Jonathan Crompton and Josh Portis.
I talked to Perrilloux Tuesday
night to see if things remained the same regarding his pledge to Texas and something he said kind
of caught my attention.
"I'm still pretty solid to
Texas but I am hearing the other
coaches out in case something out of the ordinary happens," he said.
This is the first time Perrilloux
did not sound as adamant about his verbal to the Longhorns and definitely the
first time I heard him refer to his commitment as "pretty solid." Before our
conversation he said he was still listening to other coaches but always
classified his commitment as "solid."
I asked him if "something out of
the ordinary" would be like a coach getting fired and he replied, "something
Don't read too much into that
statement for now but also don't brand the Longhorn logo on this kid just yet. I
believe he is solid with Texas
right now but LSU will make a strong push at the end.
Perrilloux said Saban and
Jimbo Fisher call once a week and tell him how bad they want
him but the Tiger coaches also call to talk about life outside of football. This
thing is going to go down to the wire and for some reason I get the feeling
Mack Brown could be left standing at the altar without his star
the No. 4 rated passer in the country from Waynesville (N.C.) Tuscola, committed
to Tennessee over the summer but
now some speculate whether or not he is having second thoughts now that the Vols
have two fantastic true freshman quarterbacks in Erik Ainge and
Brent Schaeffer. Crompton says his pledge is solid but now his
father is starting to get a little more involved and encouraging his son to take
a look at some other schools. LSU was one of the schools the 6-4, 216-pounder
was considering before he chose Tennessee and Tiger fans are hoping that LSU
will get an official visit from him. The problem I have with that scenario is
that if he is having second thoughts because of
Tennessee's two true freshmen
quarterbacks how is that different from LSU's two redshirt freshmen in
JaMarcus Russell and Matt Flynn?
(Calif.) quarterback Josh
Portis (6-3, 190, 4.55) will be visiting LSU when the Tigers have a bye
week after the Florida contest.
Portis is the same type of quarterback as Perrilloux in terms of being able to
hurt you with his feet and his arm. He is not as fully developed as Perrilloux
is but he has a huge upside.
Washington all have the upper hand
for now because of being closer to home for the country's 11th rated
quarterback but LSU is making up some ground on this front too.
Several newspapers broke a story
about LSU commitment Clarence Ward (5-11, 175, 4.6) getting
kicked out of school but Texas recruiting analyst Stacey Dean caught up with the
LaMarque (Texas) product to set the story straight and my what a different story
Ward gave. He said he was still in school and he will be rejoining the team next
Friday for the start of district play. Ward said he was suspended and the reason
was "personal" but "everything is cool now." I called a couple of times and was
unsuccessful at reaching him to find out if he was still committed but I have no
reason to think Saban pulled back on the offer he gave him during the spring.
Oklahoma and UCLA may get a visit from the
standout free safety but if Saban wants him as part of his class then he will
most likely be there come signing day.
LSU had some important visitors
last weekend for the Mississippi
State game. Defensive end
Raymond Henderson of Oak
(Wis.) made his official visit to
Tiger town while Collins (Miss.)
center Josh McNeil and Kansas City (Missouri) Rockhurst
receiver D.J. Hord visited the Capitol City on an unofficial
(6-5, 255, 4.65) rated his trip a "nine" and for the first time he declared a
leader and it is LSU. Marcus Spears was his player host for the
weekend and the two hit it off. A couple of important notes on Henderson is his
sister lives in Baton Rouge and his favorite uncle lives in New Orleans so the
thought of him leaving the Cheese State to head down to the bayou does not seem
as unlikely as it did at first.
Henderson was born in the
City and then moved to
Wisconsin about five years later
and he said he has some fond memories of living in the
State. He also plans to visit
Tennessee (10/23) and Miami with Oklahoma, USC, Notre Dame, Iowa and Penn State
fighting for the other two visits.
McNeil (6-4, 275, 5.2) gave his
unofficial visit a "10" and said he loved the atmosphere and the way LSU played.
His brother, Chris McNeil, is the starting center for
State but Josh said he is looking for
the best place for him to play his college football and I can't see that being
at Starkville. The Bulldogs have
made his final five but for now Josh said LSU and
Florida are his two top choices.
Tennessee are the other two
finalists and don't expect a decision from the country's top rated center until
he makes all of his official visits. Speaking of
Florida, Josh will be taking his
official visit to Gainesville this
weekend when the Gators host
Arkansas so we should get a much
better read on him after that visit.
City is a nice little drive to Baton
Rouge but that did not stop Hord from checking out the
Tigers last weekend. It was his first time at LSU and wouldn't you know LSU
would be forced to play a day game for his first experience in Tiger Stadium.
The 6-1, 190-pounder with 4.4 speed said he loved the facilities and enjoyed the
game but the early start took away from the normal hype surrounding the gameday
atmosphere. He gave his trip an "8" on a scale of 1 to 10 but he does plan on
taking an official visit where he will get to spend more time with the coaches
and players. Hord said LSU is currently one of his top choices along with
Missouri, Notre Dame,
I think LSU has a good shot at
(Texas) Kimball defensive tackle
DeMarcus Granger and he said LSU is in his top four with
Oklahoma State and
Texas. Granger (6-2, 325, 5.2)
said he talks to the LSU coaches once a week either with Nick Saban or Bobby Williams.
"They tell me how bad they want me
to go there and we go over the depth chart a lot," Granger said. "They have some
defensive tackles but I think I can go in and get some early playing
Granger has never come out and said
anyone led for his services but I can tell you from our many conversations that
LSU is in good shape for now.
I hit on some of LSU's top tight
end prospects last week but I did not mention the nation's No. 9 rated player at
that position Gabe McKenzie (6-3, 215, 4.7). The
(Ala.) Davidson product likes the
Tigers and will make an official visit but he is dead set on playing tight end
eve though he may be a better fit for defensive end. He speaks of what happened
to Marcus Spears when he came out of Southern Lab and how that
"One thing that I am concerned about is
their defensive end Marcus Spears was the No. 1 tight end out
of high school and they moved him to defense," McKenzie said. "I play defensive
end now but I want to play tight end at college."
Another thing that worries McKenzie
is the Tigers' depth at receiver and he wonders whether or not he would get the
(La.) safety prospect Gary Riggs (6-2, 205, 4.5) is putting up some nig numbers at quarterback
this year. LSU was showing some early interest but Riggs said he has not talked
to anyone from LSU on the phone during the month of September when coaches could
start calling recruits. He said he has gotten a lot of mail from the Tigers but
South Carolina and Ole Miss are
his only offers with Tennessee and
Florida calling on a weekly basis.
Louisiana product that could be
close to getting an offer is Mandeville-Fontainebleau offensive tackle/defensive
end Rudy Odum (6-3, 265, 5.1). Will Muschamp
keeps in touch with the athletic lineman and Odum said he told him that they
like him a lot but want to see a little more film on him during his senior
season before they offer. Odum currently lists the Tigers, Ole Miss,
Carolina and Virginia Tech as his five favorites. All
have offered except for the Bayou Bengals.
In basketball news, John Brady added Florence
(Ore.) Siuslaw point guard
Ben Voogd to his commitment list for the Class of 2005. The
6-2, 175-pounder averaged 28 points and 8 assists a game as a junior. He has
good scoring ability but the thing that stands out with this young man is his
ability to get all of his teammates involved in the offense and that is what LSU
desperately needs. Voogd is very excited about being a Tiger and plans on
signing his national letter of intent during the early signing period in
That is all for this week but
remember to check out www.tigerrag.com for daily recruiting updates, a
complete database with all of the recruits on the Tigers' board and for the
latest on LSU sports. If you have questions or comments please e-mail Tiger Rag
Recruiting Analyst Sonny Shipp at firstname.lastname@example.org