Williams drops by LSU

You can never have too many difference makers on the defensive side of the ball. LSU is in on several big name linebackers that fit that bill and actually played host to one this past weekend as Virginia's Chase Williams was on campus for an unofficial visit.

At 6-foot-3, 238 pounds and with 4.6 speed, Williams certainly has the measurables of a prototype linebacker. Those measurable would also make him a threat as a pass catching tight end, and he starred at both positions last year at Loudoun County High School.


“I feel like I played well offensively and defensively,” Williams said. “On defense I had 163 tackles, 33 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks, one interception, two fumble recoveries, six forced fumbles, and 11 breakups. At tight end I had 36 catches for 481 yards and 3 touchdowns.”


Williams says he is open to playing on either side of the ball at the next level, but admits he would prefer to stay on defense.


“Personally I love defense, but wherever I decide to go I’ll do whatever the team needs,” he said. “I prefer defense though, particularly middle linebacker. I feel like I’m a prototype middle linebacker. My best quality is my knowledge of the game and quarterbacking the defense. I want to work to keep getting better overall and staying consistent.”


The fact that Williams prefers defense and has an outstanding knowledge of the game comes as no surprise when you consider his father, New Orleans Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, has been considered one of the best defensive minds in the NFL for the last 15 years. Given this, Chase spent a good portion of his childhood in NFL locker rooms and on NFL practice fields, and he took advantage of those opportunities.


“I had a great advantage growing up around the game,” Williams said. “I got coaching and basic knowledge of the schemes from my dad and other coaches. A lot of things he would teach me directly, but there were also a lot of things I would pick up on just watching him.”


Given his measurables, production on the field, and NFL lineage, it’s not surprising to find out Williams has the attention of schools all around the country.


“Right now I have offers from West Virginia, SMU, and New Mexico State,” he said. “I’m being recruited by LSU, Missouri, Alabama, Tennessee, Syracuse, Virginia Tech, Virginia, Maryland, South Carolina, UCLA, Louisville, Illinois and Iowa State.”


Williams has already taken the time to visit a number of schools he is interested in, and he has an equally busy schedule of visits in the coming weeks.


“I have been to Oklahoma, Maryland, Virginia Tech, Tennessee, South Carolina and LSU so far,” he said. “They have all been great. Every school I’ve been to is impressive. In the next few weeks I have trips planned to Miami, West Virginia, SMU, and Louisville. I’m also going back to LSU for their spring game on April 18.”


Williams’ says his visit to LSU was not planned, but more of just a right place, right time sort of deal.


“I was actually down in New Orleans over the weekend to visit my dad and brother,” Williams said. “Coach Chavis called my dad and said he heard I was in town visiting then asked him to bring me up to watch practice. So we headed up to Baton Rouge and when we got up there I loved it. They work hard. Seeing the way the coaches interacted with the players was a familiar feeling I hadn’t gotten on some of my other visits.


“After practice was over we went and toured the campus and facilities,” he continued. “I was very impressed with the facilities. The tour of the academic center was especially amazing. They really focus on developing the student part of student-athlete, which was impressive to me because academics are very important. I also got to see the apartments the players live in and those are very nice too.”


Once Williams finished touring the campus he headed back over to the football operations building to speak with the coaches.


“My dad has known coach Chavis for a while,” he said. “They had already been talking in coach Chavis’ office for a while when I walked in. We talked a little about football, but also academics and about the university in general. I also talked to coach Miles and coach (Don) Yanowsky.


“Coach Miles told me to expect to be recruited pretty heavily by LSU. He said they like me for both offense and defense, and aren’t sure yet which position they are going to recruit me for. Before I left he invited me to come back down for the spring game. I didn’t have anything else planned for that weekend, so I immediately said yes.”


While Williams was not very familiar with the LSU program growing up, his interest in the Tigers has grown over the last few years.


“Growing up I didn’t really like college football, so I didn’t have a favorite school,” he said. “But when my dad was with the Redskins he drafted Laron Landry. And Laron is one of my favorite players so I started to learn a little more about LSU because of him. Plus when my dad went down to Baton Rouge to scout him before the draft he brought me back a pair of LSU shorts that I still probably wear once a week.”


While Williams thoroughly enjoyed his time on the LSU campus last weekend and is looking forward to his return visit next month, he says it will still be a while before he starts making any decisions about his recruitment.


“When my dad got the job with the Saints we were looking at moving down to New Orleans with him,” Williams said. “But we have already set a plan in place for me to graduate school early and enroll in college next spring, and we couldn’t find a school in New Orleans that I would be able to do that at.


“Knowing that I’m going to graduate early means the recruiting process for me is going to be sped up,” he continued. “But I’m still visiting schools and hearing from new schools so I don’t want to eliminate anyone yet. When I do decide on a school, it’s not just going to be a football decision. I’m going to be a part of that school for the rest of my life. It’s going to have to be an all around good fit for myself and the team with football, academics, and the school in general.”

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