LSU recruiting: Latest updates on the Tigers’ 2018 class

LSU has laid the foundation for what could be a top-10 recruiting class in 2018. Over the next few months, the coaching staff will attempt to add a couple of pieces that would put this collection of talent into “elite” territory.

The Tigers’ 2018 recruiting class, which is up to 18 commitments, has room for upward of 10 additions.

Each Friday, SEC Country will review the week that was in LSU recruiting. That includes an overview of the current commitments, the top remaining targets on the board and what could be in store next for the Tigers.

LSU recruiting: Where it ranks

  • LSU’s 2018 recruiting class ranks No. 16 in the country and No. 6 in the SEC, according to the 247Sports composite rankings.
  • The Tigers hold 18 commitments. That breaks down to six 4-star recruits and 12 3-star prospects.

The week that was

Current commits

  • Jarell Cherry, 4-star EDGE
  • Davin Cotton, 4-star DL
  • Chasen Hines, 4-star OL
  • Damone Clark, 4-star LB
  • Kenan Jones, 4-star WR
  • Dare Rosenthal, 4-star DL
  • Chris Curry, 3-star RB
  • Micah Baskerville, 3-star LB
  • Jaray Jenkins, 3-star WR
  • Travez Moore, 3-star EDGE
  • Cole Smith, 3-star OL
  • Cameron Wire, 3-star OL
  • Zach Sheffer, 3-star TE
  • Nelson Jenkins, 3-star DL
  • Tae Provens, 3-star RB
  • Ar’Darius Washington, 3-star DB
  • Ja’Quon Griffin, 3-star DL
  • Dantrieze Scott, 3-star EDGE

Top uncommitted targets

  • T errace Marshall Jr., 5-star WR (Bossier City, La.): A new-look top 5 hasn’t hurt LSU’s chances with the nation’s top wide receiver. LSU, Texas A&M and Texas kept their spots, while Alabama and Florida State joined the fray. The 5-star receiver will officially visit all of his top schools over the next month, including LSU on Nov. 25. Marshall is high on his relationship with the LSU coaching staff, but said it will come down to how the Tigers’ offense looks. A decision will come Dec. 22.
  • Patrick Surtain Jr., 5-star CB (Plantation, Fla.): The nation’s No. 1 cornerback released a final six of LSU, Florida State, Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Florida. Surtain’s most recent visit to LSU with his parents came in July. They toured the campus and got an up-close look at the academic offerings. Surtain also spent quality time with LSU players, most notably Donte Jackson and Kevin Toliver II. Surtain has named LSU as his leading school, but a commitment won’t come until National Signing Day in February. He is the top defensive target on LSU’s board.
  • Anthony Cook, 5-star CB (Houston): LSU holds commitments from only one defensive back in the 2018 class. Defensive backs coach Corey Raymond from dialing up the pressure on Cook. The Army All-American was high on LSU after making a visit for the Tigers’ spring game and he has been in touch with LSU every day since. Cook included LSU in his final three, along with Ohio State and Texas. Cook will make an official visit to Baton Rouge on Oct. 14 before an Oct. 30 commitment date. Ohio State and Texas remain the teams to beat.
  • Kelvin Joseph, 4-star DB (Baton Rouge, La.):  Joseph de-committed from LSU on Oct. 2, which came out of left field. The 4-star Baton Rouge prospect wanted to take all five of his official visits, but some schools were reluctant to allow him on campus while still committed to LSU. Joseph reopened his recruitment, but maintains the Tigers as his top team. He’ll visit Florida State, Clemson, Alabama and LSU before a February decision. Expect Joseph to return to the Tigers’ 2018 class.
  • Nadab Joseph, 4-star DB (Miami, Fla.): Joseph also de-committed from LSU. He reopened his recruitment in June amid a strong push from Alabama, Georgia and Florida State, among others. The long-time LSU commit is down to LSU and Alabama, with official visits scheduled to Tuscaloosa, Ala., for the LSU game on Nov. 4 and to Baton Rouge for Nov. 25 when the Tigers host Texas A&M. Expect Joseph to make a decision soon after those official stops with Alabama as the slight favorite at the moment.
  • Justin Watkins, 4-star ATH (Clermont, Fla.): Watkins, another one-time LSU commitment, is bracing for a decision sometime in the next two months. LSU is one of two finalists along with the Crimson Tide. The versatile 4-star athlete is now being courted at a slot receiver in the Tigers’ offense. In what could be a crazy twist, Watkins — who since de-committing from LSU has been committed to both Florida State and Texas — could likely wind up in Baton Rouge.
  • Justin Rogers, 4-star QB (Bossier City, La.): Louisiana’s No. 1 quarterback committed to TCU on May 31, but that has not deterred LSU coaches from continuing the press for Rogers. While Rogers is solid with the Horned Frogs, he is keeping an open mind toward the Tigers and their new-look offense. The 4-star dual-threat quarterback will officially visit LSU on Nov. 25 alongside Marshall. Rogers is an early enrollee, so if LSU gets back in the race, it would need to impress the dual-threat prospect quickly. LSU is unlikely to take a quarterback in its 2018 class that isn’t named Justin Rogers.
  • Harold Joiner, 4-star RB (Birmingham, Ala.): After jumping out to an early lead and then being excluded from Joiner’s top 6, LSU again finds itself in a strong position to land his commitment. The 4-star tailback cooled on the Tigers after they procured commitments from three running backs at the end of June, but Tommie Robinson has worked hard to repair the relationship and put LSU in a strong position to add Joiner this fall. Joiner will save his final official visit for LSU. Alabama has made a strong push for the in-state tailback after missing on Asa Martin and Zamir White, but LSU remains the favorite.
  • Ja’Marr Chase, 4-star WR (New Orleans): Chase made a surprising decision to commit to Florida after attending Friday Night Lights in July, but LSU has refused to turn down its efforts for the in-state wide receiver. Chase made his way to Baton Rouge for the home opener against Chattanooga and there is some confidence on the LSU side that it can get Chase in this class, though the 4-star prospect seems to be leaning toward his out-of-state options.
  • Michael Thompson, 4-star DL (St. Louis): Thompson included LSU in his final five schools after making a visit to campus for junior day in the spring. Thompson and his mother received the red-carpet treatment from coach Ed Orgeron, which made a strong impression on the blue-chip defensive tackle. Thompson is beginning to make more visits with fall now here, and an official visit to LSU should be in the cards this season. Missouri is considered the favorite to land the in-state prospect, but LSU may be the top option if he chooses to head out of state.
  • Devonta Jason, 4-star WR (New Orleans): Jason has been committed to Kansas since February, but a final decision won’t come until December before he graduates and enrolls early at the university of his choosing. The elite in-state receiver visited LSU in July and enjoyed a sit-down meeting with Orgeron and wide receivers coach Mickey Joseph. LSU has been working hard behind the scenes to get Jason back on campus and will likely host him for a number of games this fall. If the Tigers’ offense impresses, they stand in a strong position.
  • Lawrence Keys III, 4-star WR (New Orleans): Keys has named LSU as his leading school and could be close to making a decision. He made an unofficial visit to Baton Rouge in the week leading up to the August dead period and received a better blueprint how he would fit into the LSU offense. Next up for Keys is getting onto campus along with his mother, who is playing an integral role in helping her son make an informed decision. Don’t be surprised if Keys pops to LSU after making an official visit in the fall.
  • Badara Traore, 4-star OL (JUCO): The No. 1 junior college offensive tackle remains a priority for offensive line coach Jeff Grimes and the Tigers’ coaching staff as they look to fortify the offensive line once K.J. Malone graduates after the 2017 season. Traore has made one official visit — to Auburn — but a stop in Baton Rouge is expected. Grimes has forged a good relationship with Traore, who could be in line for immediate playing time if he chooses LSU. He is early in the recruiting process, so things are open at this point.
  • Glenn Beal, 3-star TE (New Orleans): Beal nearly popped to LSU on several occasions dating back to last summer when he picked up his offer. As his recruitment has taken off, he has relied on patience while going through the process. Beal recently made an unofficial visit to LSU and will make an official stop there on Feb. 2. The priority tight end target is high on the new-look offense and the Tigers have put themselves in a strong position to keep the 6-foot-5, 260-pound standout in-state.
  • Andres Fox, 3-star EDGE (Mobile, Ala.): LSU cracked Fox’s top 4 schools in July before he conceded that Auburn and Alabama were a notch above the Tigers. Fox made visits to Auburn and Alabama in July and also squeezed in stops to Stanford and LSU. But he opted to delay announcing his commitment, which originally was scheduled for before his senior season. Fox has a private leader and is currently silently committed. It could very well be LSU, Auburn, Alabama or even Stanford, as the 3-star pass rusher is refusing to show his hand. He’ll make it public on National Signing Day.
  • Joseph Foucha, 3-star DB (New Orleans): Foucha garnered his offer from LSU during the elite high school camp in June and has returned twice for unofficial visits, including before the NCAA’s dead period. Once considered an Auburn lean, Foucha included LSU in his final 7 before his senior season. Foucha is high on LSU, Auburn, Alabama and Florida State, but with a National Signing Day decision looming, it may come down to which school reserves a spot for the versatile defensive back.
  • Michael Williams , 3-star ATH (Baton Rouge, La.): One of the biggest unknowns in The Boot this recruiting class is Williams, who holds offers from LSU and Alabama, but appears to be undecided. Williams camped at LSU at the start of June and drew the attention of defensive coordinator Dave Aranda. Williams certainly is in the discussion as one of LSU’s top uncommitted defensive targets. Behind the scenes, Aranda is in daily contact with the projected defensive end, who has made visits to nearly every LSU home game this fall.

Positional breakdown

  • QB: 0 of 1
  • RB: 2 of 3
  • WR: 2 of 5
  • TE: 1 of 2
  • OL: 2 of 4
  • DL: 5 of 5
  • EDGE: 3 of 3
  • LB: 2 of 2
  • DB: 1 of 3

Geographic breakdown

  • Louisiana: 11
  • Florida: 2
  • Texas: 2
  • Georgia: 1
  • Alabama: 1
  • Mississippi: 1

The post LSU recruiting: Latest updates on the Tigers’ 2018 class appeared first on SEC Country.

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