Collins Was Ready All Along

On Tuesday afternoon Jalen Collins became the 14th commitment to LSU's 2011 class. The Olive Branch cornerback received an offer from the Tigers during his stay at the LSU Elite Camp last week.

The dominos at defensive back are officially beginning to fall.

After the Tigers extended an offer to Ronald Martin at the conclusion of the camp session last week, the White Castle safety jumped on board as LSU’s 12th pledge.

Punter Dalton Botts followed shortly after as No. 13.

One day later, Olive Branch cornerback Jalen Collins called head coach Les Miles and added his name to the fast-growing list.

“We were waiting on the scholarship papers to get here, because I had only gotten a verbal offer when I was at camp,” said Collins on Tuesday afternoon. “My mom told me that the papers could either still be in the mail or the address might have been to the school, so I just went ahead and called the coaches and asked if I could commit without them.”

The answer, of course, was the one Collins went searching for.

“Coach Miles took my commitment right there on the spot,” he said.

The 6-foot-2, 180-pound Collins said that while defensive backs coach Ron Cooper was unable to be on the line, the conversation with Miles went as expected.

“I asked for coach Cooper, but coach Miles told me that he was on a plane at the moment and couldn’t get on the phone with us,” Collins said. “He told me that he would take me into the class right then if I was ready, so I just committed. Coach Miles kept talking about how excited this made him. He said they already had Ronald Martin committed from the camp and that they had hoped to get me as well.

“It’s a big relief,” he continued. “I had transferred schools and moved around some, so to finally have a big college take notice and go after me meant a lot. I had been thinking about committing pretty much since I left campus last week. It all just seemed right.”

After Collins started two seasons at DeSoto he made the move to Olive Branch, a powerful Mississippi high school football program that will certainly give him the opportunity to shine in the spotlight on Friday nights this fall.

Whether or not that translates into more attention from college coaches remains to be seen. No matter, Collins said that his status as a member of LSU’s class would not change.

“It’s all done with,” said Collins of his recruitment. “LSU took that first chance with me and I have to respect that until the end. It’s a great spot to play at, and that’s where I want to be. Nothing is going to change that.”

The Southaven, Miss. standout clocked a 4.46 40-yard dash, 3.9 shuttle and 10’ broad jump during his time at the Elite Camp in Baton Rouge.


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