(De Smet, MO) CB
-2 Fumble Recoveries
Despite Christian Gray making over 5 visits to Notre Dame in the past 8 months & receiving plenty of one on one attention from former Defensive Coordinator / current Irish Head Coach Marcus Freeman, LSU are now emerging as a frontrunner for Gray's commitment, with his recruitment headed up by none other than the De Smet cornerback's former high school Head Coach....
Robert Steeples, DBU's current cornerbacks coach, won a state championship as well as national coaching honors for his leadership at De Smet High, including a max visibility rivalry game win on ESPN. Among those young men he coached? Gray, current LSU Tiger Mekhi Wingo, and Mac Markway.....could LSU make it 3/3 from De Smet??
While Christian is still months away from his July 4th commitment, I believe he's nearing & narrowing his decision between Notre Dame and LSU.
Among the top lockdown corners of 2023, Christian is being treated as "the #1 guy" by Notre Dame's Marcus Freeman and courted heavily by the "hometown" school. Meanwhile, Robert Steeples continues to cultivate their deep relationship, one which stretches back years and includes an unbelievable championship run at De Smet High. That season, Robert Steeples won national High School Coach of the Year honors, a job which jettisoned him from high school ball to the NFL (an incredible and rare climb).
Winning in style & swagger as a family is the only thing Gray has known under Robert Steeples' leadership.........
The only question from doubters?
The real question I've been asked by national media types?
Can he replace the great Corey Raymond, DBU's former leader?
My own question?
Does he have to replace Corey Raymond? Can't he just be Robert Steeples?
Due to Marcus Freeman's intense early pursuit, as well as these questions, Gray's LSU interest seemed rocky at first, but after two hugely successful Spring visits to Baton Rouge, including turning down Notre Dame's Spring Game invite for DBU's instead, Christian's possible commitment to the Tigers appeared closer than ever before during his Spring Game stay (meeting Tyrann Mathieu will do that to you).
Now, after one on one talks with Head Coach Brian Kelly, a meeting with Tyrann Mathieu on the Spring Game sidelines at Death Valley, an alliance with other 2023 DBU targets or commits, as Steeples visits Gray back home in Missouri, his former Head Coach can build off their years-long establishment together in football. While surrounded by familiar environments & shared successes, Steeples should be able to erase any doubt about where DBU's 2023 priorities lie.
Facing a massive uphill battle for Gray's signature at the start of Spring, I now have to say, due to multiple outstanding factors in his favor, Robert Steeples appears on the cusp of earning yet another big DBU commitment on July 4th.....when De Smet's highly prized cornerback officially announces.
Only time will tell....but I'm not betting against Robert Steeples.
by LONN PHILLIPS SULLIVAN
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