On March 30th Lonnie Gosha called his recruitment process quits by committing to the Florida State coaching staff, one of the in-state favorites for the Lake Butler, Fla. native.
Yet by the first of April, Gosha, a junior in high school, had called the staff back to deliver a new decision. Instead of shutting things down 10 months before National Signing Day, the Union County standout reopened his race.
“I decided that opening it up to all the schools again would show coaches that I am still open,” Gosha said. “I want everyone to be on the same playing field, and being committed won’t let that happen. It didn’t make sense for me this early.”
The news apparently spread quickly.
Late last week the LSU staff extended Gosha a scholarship, bringing the 6-foot-3, 245-pound prospect into an already heavy list of juniors offered by the Tigers on the defensive line.
A longtime fan of the Southeastern Conference, Gosha said that the LSU offer – his fifth from an SEC school - brought another opportunity to compete at the highest level in college football. And when it comes to playing in the National Football League on Sundays, Gosha sees Baton Rouge as a stepping-stone.
“When I think LSU, I think of Glenn Dorsey and Tyson Jackson,” he said. “The program is known for putting those types of big playmakers into the league. The defensive line has a great tradition, and that is big for me. I look at that and want to be a part of it.
“They could turn out those guys, so why not me?”
Being recruited as a defensive tackle by most programs, Gosha’s stock is rising by the month. With an offer list nearing double-digits, what will help the Sunshine State standout begin to put one school over the next in a race that includes the likes of Alabama, Florida, Florida State, LSU and Georgia?
“I want the chance to play early,” he said. “That and the academic side of each school will be big factors. I want to feel at home with the campus, coaches and players. I will get a feel for that stuff on visits this summer and in the fall.”
Gosha, who said that he does not plan on making his commitment public until after his senior season, tabbed Alabama, Georgia and LSU as three teams he hopes to find out more about. A return trip to Tuscaloosa is already set.
He named Tennessee, Miami and North Carolina as schools he still hopes to receive scholarships from.
If he is not able to make a campus visit this summer, expect to see Gosha take an official trip to LSU in the fall.
“After the offer, I really want to get over there,” he said. “LSU is a school I had hoped would offer, and now I just have to hope the coaching staff starts to turn up the heat and recruit me.
“I think it could be a good fit because of the defensive success that the program has had, but I don’t know much about the personal side yet. It’s something I look forward to finding out more about.”