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National Signing Day 2017 wrap-up: LSU Tigers

LSU puts together a solid top-10 class loaded with top-flight defensive talent

LSU defensive end signee K’Lavon Chaisson
Kipp Adams, 247Sports

In Ed Orgeron’s first recruiting class, the LSU Tigers signed a total of 23 players and finished No. 7 in 247Sports’ Composite Team Rankings. The Tigers had six players enroll in January, while 17 signed today.

It was a strong class for Orgeron with some high-end talent picking LSU on signing day.


Key Players

5* DE K’Lavon Chaisson

The Tigers went head-to-head with Texas and new head coach Tom Herman for Chaisson—and won. Chaisson, from Houston where Herman has dominated on the recruiting trail the last two years, picked LSU and guaranteed the Longhorns wouldn’t have a consensus Top 10 player from the state of Texas for the first in.....forever.

Chaisson is an elite talent. While not as highly ranked as Myles Garrett coming out of high school, Chaisson’s length and athleticism scream superstar. Fortunately for the Tigers, they have Arden Key and can choose to bring Chaisson along slowly. However, with a talent like Chaisson you can be assured LSU defensive coordinator Dave Aranda will find ways to get him on the field as a true freshman in 2017.

5* safety JaCoby Stevens

Stevens is an early enrollee, so he is already on campus. That is great news for LSU as the Tigers try to replace Jamal Adams, a presumed top-10 pick in the upcoming NFL Draft.

Stevens, who also played wide receiver in high school, is a spectacular athlete. While he could play offense at the next level, Stevens’ natural instincts on the defensive side of the ball make him an ideal safety. He can easily line up with slot receivers and athletic tight ends in the SEC.

Stevens will see the field in 2017.


Takeaways

  • Tigers loaded up at safety: Stevens in the headliner, but LSU also signed two more really talented safeties in Grant Delpit and Todd Harris. The great thing about each of these players is none of three are locked into position. For instance, you don’t just look at Stevens and see a strong safety. Aranda can move them around at both safety positions or at nickel corner. The versatility this group brings is unmatched.
  • LSU lost considerable talent in-state: The Tigers generally dominate recruiting inside the state of Louisiana. In 2017, things were a bit different. While the Tigers signed two of the state’s top three players, Alabama came in and signed three of the top five. Overall, the Tigers signed just three of the state’s top 10 players. Schools such as Georgia Tech and Mississippi State came in and plucked top-10 players from LSU’s backyard.
  • LSU was stronger in Texas than Texas: Herman is known as a recruiting powerhouse within the state of Texas and he was expected to provide immediate dividends. He didn’t. And LSU took advantage. The Tigers signed three of the state’s top 12 players. With Orgeron now in charge, expect LSU’s success in Texas to continue. Orgeron is a tireless recruiter who is respected on a national level.
  • Two talented quarterbacks joined the program: If LSU is ever going to challenge Alabama again, the Tigers need to evolve on offense. They took a major step with this class. The Tigers signed one dual-threat passer in Lowell Narcisse of St. James, La., and dropback passer Myles Brennan from St. Louis. Narcisse is an incredible athlete that can take over a game when things break down. The coaching staff will heavily involve him in the running game to keep the defense off-balanced. In Brennan, the Tigers get a player who does most of his damage from the pocket. Brennan is essentially the exact opposite of Narcisse. Both have strong arms, while Brennan is the more accurate passer. Brennan has a good frame and should be able to add some size and strength at the next level. Narcisse can probably make more of an immediate impact.