Record Early Departures Mean LSU Freshmen Will Play
After a record 11 underclassman declared for the NFL Draft, LSU is going to need some freshmen to step in right away, especially on defense. As usual, Les Miles and his staff did a great job of recruiting for areas of need.
The defensive line was hit hard with the departures of Sam Montgomery, Barkevious Mingo, and Bennie Logan. There are at least four incoming defensive linemen that could see action immediately : Greg Gilmore, Christian LaCouture, Frank Herron, and Maquedius Bain.
Gilmore may need to add some more weight to his 6-foot-4 and 275 pounds frame in order to handle the rigors of playing defensive tackle in the SEC. The North Carolina native is an Under Armour All-American and rated as high as five stars by Rivals.com.
LaCouture already may posses the size of a conference defensive tackle as he weighs 290 pounds and stands 6-foot-5. He was rated as the No. 2 prospect in the state of Nebraska by 247Sports.
A U.S. Army All-American, Frank Herron, may see immediate playing time at defensive end. Most recruiting sites had the 6-foot-5 and 245-pound Memphis native rated at five stars.
Bain participated in the Under Armour All-American Game and was rated as the No. 41 defensive tackle prospect in the nation by Rivals.com.
In addition to the defensive line, LSU’s secondary also was hit hard by early departures. If you count former cornerback Tyrann Mathieu, the Tigers lost three players who were either cornerbacks or safeties. Safety Eric Reid and cornerback Tharold Simon also left early.
Tre’Davious White and Jeryl Brazil are two incoming freshmen with the potential to see immediate playing time. White is a five-star cornerback and was the top overall prospect in Louisiana according to Rivals.com. Brazil can help the Tigers in the secondary and could also see time returning punts or kickoffs. He’s noted for his blazing speed and big-play ability.
Although there are not as many incoming offensive players that will be slated for early playing time, that’s only because LSU returns most of its offensive production from last season. The Tigers did recruit five offensive linemen and four wide receivers. Most of those players probably will redshirt, which should give LSU plenty of depth on offense come 2014.