BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - LSU basketball coach Johnny Jones had one of the top recruiting classes in the college ranks, including the nation's top recruit in All-American Ben Simmons. He most likely will play one season and he'll be off to the NBA.
Jones says that's how the college game is going. Kentucky has built a reputation of signing the best players in the nation and after a year of playing with the Wildcats, they decide to enter the NBA Draft.
When you consider the players LSU signed and the talent that is returning from the NCAA playoff team, Jones should have a contender in the SEC.
LSU running backs coach Frank Wilson has developed a reputation as one of the premier recruiters in college football. Throw-in Ed Orgeron, the Tigers new defensive line coach and LSU has two of the top recruiters in the nation.
Wilson knows recruiting is the life-blood of college football teams and to be a contender, especially in the SEC West, teams need top-notch players.
Wilson has a crop of outstanding running backs for the upcoming 2015 football season. Of course, sophomore Leonard Fournette is the main tailback returning. Wilson says Fournette had a great spring and one of the most improved players. That spells trouble for the opposition.
"You look at where he's come from, "stated Wilson. "We knew who he was and what he was and we knew it would take time. He had great leadership with Kenny Hilliard and Terrance Magee a year ago and we knew it was only a matter of time before he understood the game inside and out. At the back end of the season he got it. He really started to come on. He had an outstanding spring and we're expecting big things from him this year."
LSU fans weren't pleased with 8 wins and 5 losses in 2014 and Fournette along with a very good offensive line should provide plenty of excitement in 2015.
Besides Fournette, Wilson inked a number of 4 & 5 star running backs in February.
"David Ducre' is a young man that came in mid-year for us, "said Wilson. "He's about 245 pounds, runs a 10.7 in the hundred-meters. Outstanding prospects for us. He played some tailback this spring for us. We have Darrius Guice, a young man from Catholic High in Baton Rouge who is an outstanding prospect and of course, Nick Brossette, a young man from University High who is the all-time national leader in touchdowns."
Once again LSU will count on the running game and defense to vie for the SEC West Division title.
If quarterbacks Anthony Jennings or Brian Harris can improve in the passing game, LSU will be a true contender. They both have a crop of game-breaking receivers and the quarterbacks job is to get the ball in their hands.
LSU actually has one scholarship still available and Wilson said if the right player came along, LSU would hesitate in offering that player a chance to compete in Baton Rouge.
Les Miles and his LSU Tigers open the season September 5 in Baton Rouge hosting McNeese State. A week later on September 12 LSU travels to Starkville opening SEC play against Mississippi State and All-American quarterback Dak Prescott, a Haughton, Louisiana native. Last season, Prescott ripped the LSU defense to threads.