by LONN PHILLIPS SULLIVAN
As National Signing day looms, LSU have a few more high priority pieces to the 2021 puzzle they must fill in order to pull off an over the top class.
Still a top 5 ranked roster for this pandemic-troubled cycle, LSU have pulled off an extraordinary class, yet one with some holes to fill. LSU need offensive line, linebacker and wide receiver talent, zeroing in on a few key guys.
Concerning these top two recruits (we'll discuss below), the pandemic has hurt their recruitment. Covid 19 has canceled numerous visits from one of these young men and affected numerous meeting opportunities which may have made all the difference.
The new realities of the pandemic forced Coach O's typical living room joviality into more formal Zoom calls. Though this cycle's struggles with Covid seemed to weaken Coach O's greatest strength, the face to face meeting, he's also gone to great lengths to maximize what LSU can offer these young men.
Despite the criticism for not capturing Leigh or Foreman, losing the flip of both Keanu Koht and Jo Jo Earle to Alabama, Orgeron hasn't wavered and he's actually pulled off a Herculean effort in 2021 after the season the Tigers had with negative recruiting at its easiest against LSU...and yet, he continued to secure one future star after another: Sage Ryan, Maason Smith, Garrett Nussmeier, Saivion Jones, Derrick Davis Jr, Landon Jackson, Deion Smith, Garrett Dellinger among many more
LSU has the right young men because of Coach O...now let's see if they can get these two who aren't just right...they're perfect.
The #1 LB in America finished his visit at Ohio State this weekend with his family, telling LSU ODYSSEY the visit "yessir it was good" keeping it close to the vest as he begins to make his final choice.
I know Coach Orgeron has been maintaining as much contact as possible with Raesjon, I have family Intel that there's "still mad love for LSU" but it's up to Raesjon as he looks at the Tigers, Ohio State, USC and Oregon...with staying at home or the Luckeyes now as the bookies' favorites.
My man A.D points out Raesjon was rocking an LSU shirt in an Instagram work out video only days ago, while that doesn't point to someone selecting their future school due to wearing a free shirt, it does however show a glimmer of hope for Tigers fans feeling Davis is slipping since his decommitment in December.
I don't know what Raesjon will do... I can only speculate on his options and where I feel he's leaning to:
At Ohio State, he's the #1 LB without much help on either side of him, he'll suffer the James Laurinaitis Effect...rack up the stats, make all these great plays, survive the Big 10 on ice skates and then run smack dab into an SEC team who's offensive attack requires linebacker, D-Line and coverage help to keep up. Simply put, at Ohio State, there's not enough help to allow Raesjon to be the playmaker he is...
At USC, he can join up with Korey Foreman where those two will have great success together and I'm sure would be 1st-3rd Round NFL draft picks, however with a constantly dramatic and shuffling behind the scenes tension at USC surrounding head coach Clay Helton, is this the failing program Raesjon wants to play for?
They've rolled out the red carpet for Raesjon, promising to un-retire Reggie Bush's #5 jersey for him to wear if he signs among other prestigious adornments ....
But it all fizzles away in comparison to how breathtaking Raesjon Davis' linebacking artistry would be at LSU, the mano e mano battles against Bama's 2021 starting QB Bryce Young, a So Cal close friend & teammate of Raesjon's...
He'd be surrounded by So Cal close friend Eli Ricks, then All world corner Derek Stingley, an army of fantastic young linebackers who would grow alongside Davis (Penn, Strong, White, Webb, Sampah) and veterans like Damone Clark & Micha Baskerville.
At LSU, Raesjon would be playing on a defense needing a star linebacker, buoyed by the two best corners in college football and anchored by the best defensive line in the game...
If Raesjon needs further proof, he was watching the title games on Sunday as former Tiger LB and 1st round pick Devin White's 3rd turnover of the playoffs take him to his first Super Bowl (joined on the same team by two more former LSU linebackers Kevin Minter & Michael Divinity) or Ravens rookie LB Patrick Queen's grasp on the Defensive Rookie of the Year award.
There were Tigers all over the NFL playoffs making crucial plays in big moments to win games in every round, Raesjon belongs with that tradition and I believe LSU is the place to maximize Raesjon's vision for the future.
How important is solidifying a defensive coordinator by signing day?
This is from the #1 source, the linebacker himself, Raesjon will lean to USC or Ohio State until LSU seal their new DC, it's just the truth. How can he commit to 4 years at LSU when the word is Coach O's job is on the line depending on this new DC, a man who just delivered a 15-0 G.O.A.T team...yet a faceless DC??? Or will LSU sign their man in Daronte Jones or Glenn Schumann?
So it's not just Raesjon committing to LSU, this is now about LSU committing to Raesjon and making him their #1 pursuit of 2021.
The Tigers desperately need a linebacker with Davis' range, his tackling ability, smart angles, quick decision making, versatility, impeccable coverage skills (he practiced with the DBs during high school) and backfield brutality....Raesjon Davis is everything LSU were missing during 2020's defensive walk of shame.
No, LSU isn't the sort of program who's future rests on the decision of one recruit, however losing an out of state superstar from So Cal whos family loves LSU, a young man who was not only committed to the Tigers for 11 months but also recruited for us tirelessly & repped LSU hard at every turn...losing him at the final hurdle due to the inability to pull in a quality defensive coordinator, as well as clearing up the litany of scandal would be an indictment on the program.
ODDS RIGHT NOW: 50/50
Since Coach O returned to the program, LSU have constantly grabbed top Louisiana talent, Ja'Marr Chase, Derek Stingley, Kayshon Boutte, Sage Ryan, Maason Smith....now it's time to keep another in state WR titan home...
Walker High's Brian Thomas Jr....who will be announcing imminently.
I have key info which gives indications of a late LSU lean away from the previous Bama/A&M exorcism from before...
There is a big web of factors at play which will decide this whole thing: either
A. The allure of staying home, playing alongside bro Chris Hilton in purple and gold just like Justin Jefferson and Ja'Marr Chase may be too much for Brian to pass up.
B. The intense recruiting by Jimbo Fisher's A&M staff could've broken through the shell, especially due to the family's Texas connections and love for the Dallas Cowboys of course...Texas isn't a reach.
C. He was stolen away by Devonta Smith's brilliance in breaking Chase's TDs record (although Smith was unable to snap Ja'Marr's yards record in a title game) and may be sworn into the cult of Saban??!?!?
What do you think?
It's hard to gather anything on Brian, but from what I've heard coming from a Baton Rouge source is LSU's Mickey Joseph and Chris Hilton have been able to make an impact, forcing a late LSU lean. A Walker High source also revealed Tigers coaches talking often with Thomas and the conversations being positive.
I also know Thomas will be dreading this decision and will be relieved to get it over with...knowing his temperament from our limited interaction, massive research and overwhelming analysis, I've come to the conclusion LSU will be very lucky if he signs...and yet, I feel he will...
I feel Brian Thomas Jr will become a Tiger.
ODDS RIGHT NOW: 70/30 TO LSU
BLACK LIVES MATTER
BY LONN PHILLIPS SULLIVAN
Copyright 2021 Uninterrupted Writings Inc LLC
SHOUTOUTS: Nursekort & Tony!!!!