The LSU Tigers have pulled off a stunner.
Many believed that five-star tight end Arik Gilbert would be bound for the Alabama Crimson Tide. Even the Georgia Bulldogs seemed to have a possibility at landing the elite pass catcher. But in a stunning turn of events, Gilbert announced on Wednesday that he would be committing to LSU. Gilbert made the announcement at the All-American Bowl ceremony at the CFB Hall of Fame in Atlanta.
5-star, No. 10 overall recruit Arik Gilbert picks LSU over Alabama.— Michael Casagrande (@ByCasagrande) October 23, 2019
To say this is a power move might be undercutting it. Gilbert is a blue-chip prospect in just about every sense of the word. Heading into his senior season, the Marietta, Georgia native checks in at 6-foot-5 and 253 lbs. To no surprise, he’s the top-ranked tight end in the country and ranked 10th in 247Sports’ Composite Rankings. He only trails Clemson Tigers commit Myles Murphy, a strong side defensive end out of Powder Springs in the Georgia rankings.
Also, to say this is a huge recruiting W for LSU is probably underselling it. It’s one of Coach O’s biggest, and especially the biggest he’s gotten over Alabama head coach Nick Saban. The Fighting Tigers were able to win the tussle for Gilbert, a sign that they are obviously still one of the premier programs in the country and should still have plenty of firepower on offense going forward.
Gilbert is LSU’s highest-ranked recruit in their superstar recruiting class for 2020. He’s the third five-star in the group now, joining cornerback Elias Ricks of IMG Academy in Bradenton and wide receiver Rakim Jarrett of St. John’s College HS in Washington D.C. What’s more: Since 247Sports began tracking recruits in the year 2000, Arik Gilbert is now tied for 13th amongst all LSU commits with former safety Craig Loston, and trails Terrance Toliver, Marcus Spears and Marquise Hill, who rank 10-12.
LSU now ranks 3rd in the nation in the 2020 cycle, trailing Clemson and ‘Bama.