This week we will take a look at the prospects scheduled for an official visit this weekend, along with the latest on Zhamal Thomas, Perrish Cox, Ian Symonette, Reshad Jones, Al Woods, Gerald McCoy, Marcus Gilbert, Jared Mitchell, Ricky Dixon, Jai Eugene and Bani Gbadyu.
It's been well documented that this weekend is going to be big in terms of recruiting and it very well could make or break the 2006 class.
LSU has a legitimate shot with 8 of the 9 guys coming in for a visit and they are all near the top of Les Miles' list at their respective positions.
Here is a snapshot look at who is scheduled to be in town and then we will take a closer look at where LSU stands with each prospect: Zhamal Thomas, Perrish Cox, Ian Symonette, Reshad Jones, Al Woods, Gerald McCoy, Marcus Gilbert, Jared Mitchell and Ricky Dixon.
There is a good chance
"I think there is a good chance I might do it," Thomas told Tiger Rag.
When asked what might make him go ahead and commit this weekend, Thomas replied, "It's LSU. Enough said."
If it was not for Thomas' academic
status then he would probably be one of the more highly sought after guard
prospects in the South. The two schools battling for the BCS Championship, USC
Pete Carroll and Mack Brown are not known for throwing verbal offers around so that is a testament to just how impressive this kid is on the gridiron.
Those two coaches, and many more for that matter, may regret that they backed off because Thomas is quite confident that he will have his academics in order. He is taking correspondence courses which will help improve his GPA and he only needs a couple of points on the ACT.
Look for LSU to try and place Thomas at a junior college if he does not qualify but the big 6-4, 325-pounder is not too keen on that idea. If he does not end up making the grade in the classroom then he will likely never suit up for the Tigers and could end up at a smaller school on the Division I-AA level.
Scout.com's No. 4 rated o-lineman in the country, Ian Symonette, will also be in town and he has a bull's eye on his chest.
There are just too many factors
For starters, if Symonette played
Symonette's family can get a
roundtrip ticket from the
The culture thing also has to be
considered and that is another factor weighing in
It's not out of the realm of possibility for Miles to convince Symonette that LSU is the best place for him and the Tigers do have a shot but there is a lot of work to be done on this front.
Four-star offensive lineman Marcus
Gilbert is also scheduled to make the trip over from the
It's not slim to none but is very slim.
Two of the top defensive tackles in the country will be on the LSU campus in Al Woods and Gerald McCoy.
Woods committed a long time ago but some Tiger fans have been nervous because he has talked about taking some other visits. If he does take any more visits there is no need to worry because he will sign with the Tigers in February.
Woods is reportedly still a little short on his test score so if Tiger fans are going to worry about anything at all then that is what they should be worrying about.
McCoy, a 6-5, 285-pounder from
McCoy is also looking at USC,
I don't think it's a coincidence
that he and Woods are visiting on the same weekend and
Two of the top three receivers in
LSU is in very good shape with
Mitchell is an interesting story because it may be August before anyone knows if he will ever step foot on a college campus.
Pro baseball is expected to throw
some big bucks his way in June and he could have an extremely tough decision to
make. If he does decide to go the college route and play football and baseball
then LSU is the team to beat over the likes of
One has to wonder, though, if Miles wants to take a chance on Mitchell if he can pick up a pair of commitments from some of the other top guys on the board.
The same thing that happened to
Four-star cornerback Perrish Cox is making his much-anticipated official visit and if things go well he could give the Tigers his pledge as early as next week.
Cox almost committed to Les Miles back over the summer and probably would have if not for all of the talk of playing him at receiver rather than corner.
After the coaches went and scouted him as a senior and saw him in action, though, now they are telling him that he can play corner and that he will get a shot there first. The concern seemed to be on whether or not he was physical enough to play back there.
One thing that has never been in question is his cover skills.
"Want a lock down corner that is
not afraid to press you," said
The nation's 11th ranked
safety Reshad Jones will fly in from
The Tigers need a free safety in this class because of the uncertainty surrounding LaRon Landry's future and Jones would be a good fit for the Tigers' scheme.
If Landry opts to test the NFL waters then the Tigers have a decent shot at picking up Jones' signature.
The four-star prospect keeps things
close to the vest but the last time I spoke to him I got the feeling that LSU,
The nation's No. 1 rated cornerback Jai Eugene visited with Les Miles for a couple of hours on Sunday and the two mostly talked about whether or not the Destrehan product would take an official to LSU.
I have mixed feelings on
The kid wants to take some trips and go see some other places and I don't think you can hold that against someone when this is the first chance they have ever had to get away for a little while.
The one thing that concerns me is
that if Miles goes overboard with the "you need to take an official visit to LSU
if you are really considering the school" like
I still feel strongly that LSU will
be the team to beat but
I caught up with Bani Gbadyu late
Thursday evening and he told me that
Right about now you are probably asking yourself the same thing that went through my mind.
How can you be still be committed to the school you chose over the summer but another school is your favorite?
Gbadyu couldn't talk long and he
was not real talkative at the time but I could tell he still has strong feelings
for LSU but some people close to him are pushing him towards
If it was not for Hurricane Katrina then Gbadyu would sign with the Tigers on signing day but Joe Paterno will more than likely end up landing the standout linebacker.
That is all for now but be sure and check back on Sunday and all next week as we will update you on the big recruiting weekend and let you know if the Tigers pick up any new pledges.