LSU mailbag: Marquez Beason, quarterback battle, chances with 5-star prospects

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Welcome to SEC Country’s weekly mailbag, a question-and-answer forum between readers and LSU team and recruiting reporter Sam Spiegelman. In this edition, we touch on the state of Marquez Beason’s commitment, new roles for the assistant coaches and the three-way quarterback competition taking place.

A lock? Not exactly, but for now, Beason was comfortable enough with the Illini coaching staff to commit there over LSU, Texas A&M and Ohio State.

The 4-star athlete was being courted as a cornerback by LSU and hinted that the Tigers made a serious impression on him after a February unofficial visit to campus. After that trip, he reached out to members of his inner circle about planning a commitment video, another signal that the Tigers were going to land a big-time commitment from the Dallas area.

Momentum slowed, though, and Beason made a visit to Illinois this past weekend and before returning to Texas, announced his commitment to Illinois.

I reached out to him this week and he indicated that a possible return trip to LSU for the spring game is still a possibility. It is not definite and those plans are certainly subject to change.

In my opinion, he will remain in touch with the LSU coaching staff, but the team is in good position with other elite cornerbacks across the country and is likely going to shift its focus to top prospects such as Derek Stingley Jr., Marcus Banks, Devin Bush and keeping steady with Maurice Hampton.

Slinger? Great nickname, Brian.

During spring practice this week, John Decoster was working with the tight ends. He’s a grad assistant that’s going to work with both tight ends and offensive tackles. Of course, offensive line coach James Cregg will also be working with the tackles, along with the rest of his linemen. The tight ends will also spend time with passing game coordinator Jerry Sullivan.

The tight ends work out as their own position group but can be grouped with wide receivers or tackles depending on which coach they are working with or what segment of practice they are in. H-backs are still working with the tight ends.

The fullbacks, which were intertwined with the tight ends during Matt Canada’s stint as offensive coordinator, are working with the tailbacks as one big running back group.

Both Faatui Tuitele and Kenyon Green made their way to LSU for a spring practice session Tuesday. It was Tuitele’s first-ever visit to Baton Rouge; meanwhile, Green — a onetime verbal pledge — returned for the first time since reopening his recruitment in December.

Tuitele has been linked to both Alabama and some West Coast schools, for obvious reasons. The 5-star defensive tackle’s former high school teammate is Tua Tagovailoa, Alabama’s quarterback. Southern Cal and Oregon are Pac-12 schools close to his home in Honolulu.

What the public fails to realize is that Dave Aranda and Ed Orgeron played an integral role in another Hawaii native’s track to LSU. Aranda has a ton of West Coast ties. He’s a California native with defensive coordinator stints at both California Lutheran, his alma mater, and Hawaii, and helped lure Breiden Fehoko to LSU when he decided to transfer.

LSU should be considered a serious player in Tuitele’s recruitment — at least early on. However, I would not consider the Tigers as the leader at this point. It remains to be seen how much momentum Orgeron, Aranda and defensive line coach Dennis Johnson can garner moving forward.

On to Green …

The 5-star offensive lineman named a top 3 of Texas A&M, Alabama and Oklahoma last month during the Nike’s Opening regional in Houston. That in no way is a solid top 3 and Green mentioned Texas and LSU as two schools knocking on the door. Green plans on releasing a top 10 in the near future, so he isn’t ruling out many schools so far.

He de-committed from LSU in the winter, but that wasn’t tied to offensive line coach Jeff Grimes leaving for BYU. More so, it was a result of other schools pushing so hard and his desire to make visits to other campuses.

Cregg has made a strong early impression on the elite lineman and a visit to campus is a positive sign in the direction of their relationship. Texas A&M should be considered the favorite, given where he’s from (Humble, Texas) and his school’s ties to the program. However, some inside the LSU building believe that the Tigers are a legitimate threat heading into what could be a summertime decision.

The obvious answer here is Myles Brennan, but I’m not sold on that just yet.

During the first two spring practices, Brennan has taken first-team reps ahead of junior Justin McMillan and redshirt freshman Lowell Narcisse. That’s been the norm for the running backs, wide receivers and linemen also in competitions taking place this spring.

While Brennan has received the first snap, it’s unclear whether that will continue throughout the spring and during the spring game in April. Last year at this time, we heard whispers that McMillan was the most impressive quarterback — over eventual starter Danny Etling and Narcisse, who enrolled early.

It’s also worth noting that Narcisse is 100 percent healthy for the first time in years. He’s slimmed down, worked on his stamina and toiled with a quarterbacks coach to help improve his accuracy.

Smart money is on Brennan earning the starting job, but it’s hard to rule out McMillan or Narcisse this early. In fact, it would not surprise me one bit to see one of the mobile quarterbacks carve out a role in Steve Ensminger’s offense by the fall.

I don’t think that will work, but hey, I don’t think it would hurt his case.

The post LSU mailbag: Marquez Beason, quarterback battle, chances with 5-star prospects appeared first on SEC Country.

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