John Emery Jr., Maurice Hampton headline LSU junior day visitors

Welcome to SEC Country’s daily Eye on the Tigers, a rundown of everything happening in LSU Tigers recruiting , with Sam Spiegelman. Today, we discuss another big weekend of visitors for LSU.

Recruits expected to visit LSU

LSU is conducting another junior day on Saturday, which will be the third in a series of recruiting functions dating back to January.

During the January event, the staff hosted a select group of elite in-state prospects and two out-of-state priority targets in 4-star quarterback Grant Gunnell and 4-star wide receiver Jalen Curry. Last month, another impressive group of in- and out-of-state targets flooded to campus. Most notably, that list included 4-star Texas cornerback Marcus Banks and Mississippi products Jaren Handy, Zach Edwards and Charles Moore, not to mention 2020 Alabama athlete Kris Abrams-Draine. Three of those five recruits committed in the aftermath of that visit.

A handful of the state’s premier prospects returned to campus last Sunday as LSU kicked off spring practice. That included 5-star defensive tackle Ishmael Sopsher and 5-star cornerback Derek Stingley Jr., as well as 4-star wide receivers Trey Palmer and Devonta Lee, among others.

Coach Ed Orgeron and Co. are set for yet another recruiting weekend as the Tigers enter the second week of spring football practice. The group is comprised of notable out-of-state recruits and some in-state prospects on LSU’s board.

Here are some of the confirmed visitors expected to be on hand:

2019 prospects with offers

  • John Emery Jr., 4-star running back
  • Maurice Hampton, 4-star defensive back, Memphis, Tenn. (LSU commit)
  • Marcel Brooks, 4-star outside linebacker, Flower Mound, Texas
  • Charles Turner, 3-star offensive lineman, Bradenton, Fla.

Notes: After making junior day visits to Oklahoma, Auburn and Michigan in recent weeks, Emery, the top-ranked running back in the state for 2019, is heading up to LSU for the Tigers’ junior day on Saturday. Emery, a priority target in this recruiting cycle, was unable to attend the Elite Junior Day designed for Louisiana’s premier talent. That’s not a cause for concern because the LSU staff knows where it stands with the New Orleans area prospect. Emery was a regular in Baton Rouge at this time a year ago as he began to develop a relationship with the staff. He returned for several games and has a keener familiarity with the in-state power than any other school. This weekend, he chose to visit LSU over another out-of-state trip to Miami.

This marks Hampton’s first visit back to Baton Rouge since taking in the Tigers’ convincing victory over Texas A&M last November. Rumblings about a potential flip to Mississippi State have been quelled after baseball coach Andy Cannizaro was removed from that position. Hampton, who’s committed to LSU in both football and baseball, chose to visit this weekend to attend the Tigers’ baseball series against Missouri and see what’s going on with spring football practice.

Brooks is making his first visit to LSU since naming the team a finalist along with Alabama. The nation’s No. 6-ranked outside linebacker unofficially visited Alabama last month, but there has been serious momentum in the Tigers’ favor recently. Brooks is a hybrid prospect capable of playing safety, linebacker and get after the passer. This will be the first opportunity to re-connect with the coaching staff since getting visits from defensive line coach Dennis Johnson during the contact period. Brooks will decide between LSU and Alabama on June 25, his birthday.

2019 prospects without offers

  • Antonio Joseph, running back, New Orleans

Joseph is one of the top running backs in Louisiana, which is loaded with talented backfield contributors this year. LSU has its sights set on a two- or three-deep running back crop in 2019. Four-star Baton Rouge back Tyrion Davis is already embedded in the class, while the staff is focused on 5-star Noah Cain and/or 4-star John Emery Jr. to join the fray in December. LSU is also monitoring prospects such as Joseph, Michael Hollins, Ahmad Antoine and Tyreese Jackson, among others.

2020 prospects without offers

  • Geron Hargon, linebacker, Shreveport, La.
  • Tyler Grubbs, linebacker, New Orleans
  • Ken Seals, 4-star quarterback, Weatherford, Texas

Hargon has made visits to Arkansas and Mississippi State in recent weeks, and now LSU will get its turn at the North Louisiana inside linebacker/tight end prospect. Grubbs, who is among the top linebackers in state out of Holy Cross in New Orleans, has been in touch with both Orgeron and defensive coordinator Dave Aranda. Grubbs made a visit to Auburn earlier this month and is now set to head to Baton Rouge ahead of the spring evaluation period.

2021 prospects with offer

  • Donovan Jackson, offensive tackle, Houston

Jackson is one of the few 2021 prospects who holds an LSU offer already. A future blue-chipper, the Houston native is almost certainly going to be ranked as one of the top offensive lineman in the country in a few years. Jackson has camped in Baton Rouge and returned for games. Last fall, former offensive line coach Jeff Grimes offered him. This visit will give the talented rising sophomore a chance to connect with new offensive line coach James Cregg.

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