There's a leader of the pack

Aaron Dotson had never been to Louisiana so his trip down South was one he had been anxiously waiting for. After having to postpone his visit a week due to Hurricane Gustav the 4-star shooting guard finally made it down to the Bayou State and the experience was everything he thought it would be.

“I loved the campus and the atmosphere,” Dotson said. “You hear all of these things but I wanted to see it for myself like how the fans were tailgating at 10 in the morning when the game doesn’t start until 7 [P.M.]. And like how the people there love athletics and love LSU period. That really jumped out at me.”


Trent Johnson made his in-home visit with Dotson (6-4, 194) and his family last Tuesday and on that visit they covered all of the ins and outs with the LSU program.


The Seattle-Rainier Beach product, however, wanted to see if LSU was a good fit for him off of the basketball court and he started realizing that late Thursday night when he arrived on campus.


“I felt really comfortable there,” said Dotson. “The players made me feel comfortable and the coaches made me feel comfortable. I just loved the atmosphere there.”


The atmosphere seemed to have made a big impression on the country’s 22nd ranked shooting guard and he attributed that to the people he interacted with.


“Everyone seemed together,” he said. “Just walking around campus and talking to the people tailgating it seemed like everyone was so friendly towards one another. That’s the kind of atmosphere I was looking for.”


Johnson made a very strong impression on Dotson and his parents when they visited last week and to see the headman and all of his assistants interact with the players let him know that he had a good read on LSU’s head coach.


“I really love Coach J,” Dotson explained. “He is a passionate coach and all of the players said the same thing that he cares about them not only as a basketball player but as a person. That’s exactly what I thought I would hear and what I was hoping to hear because that’s the kind of coach I want to play for.”


Dotson had plenty of time to tour the athletic and academic facilities during his stay and as much as he enjoyed seeing that side of LSU there was another aspect of the trip he considered a highlight.


“That [football game] was nothing like I’ve ever experienced before even with it not being as full as it usually is it was still pretty crazy,” said Dotson. “We were down on the field before the game while they were warming up and to hear the band and see the student section was pretty cool.”


Going into the visit Dotson said he was already comfortable with the style of basketball that Johnson plans to run and the opportunity for early playing time.


He said they didn’t go into much detail on that end of things because it was already covered in the in-home visit.


Next up for the 4-star prospect is an official visit to Miami next weekend (9/27) followed by a trip to Louisville (10/18). He said that he may take a visit to SMU along with making an unofficial trip across town to check out Washington.


When spoke to Dotson a couple of days prior to his visit to LSU he said that the Tigers were in the lead after Johnson’s in-home visit.


Now that he has seen first-hand just what LSU has to offer, what is his take on the Tigers?


“The visit didn’t do anything to hurt them and if anything it helped them a lot,” he said with a big laugh. “You can say they are really in the lead now.”


Note: Aaron Dotson averaged 16 points and six boards a game as a junior.’s national scouts have seen in person and the word on him is that he is very athletic and a good shooter from 18-19 feet. 


Here is what Dotson’s AAU coach had to say back in July about what he brings to the table?


“First off, he is an excellent on-ball defender,” said Friends of Hoops head coach Chucky Williams. “Defending away from the ball is something he will have to improve on when he gets to college but on the ball he is a lockdown defender. Everything people say about him being athletic is true.”


“He is explosive and he can rise up but the biggest stride he has made is he went beyond the 3-point line this summer and shot the ball extremely well. He’s also added a mid-range game to his arsenal. He’s a special scorer in my opinion.”

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