LSU secured three offensive linemen for the class of 2020 and five offensive linemen from the class of 2019. For 2021, the Tigers need high-end talent more than numbers.
Winning in the trenches is not a new idea. It’s old school. It’s also still a pivotal factor when discussing college football. LSU coach Ed Orgeron has focused on finding top offensive linemen, and the class of 2021 will present a unique challenge.
The Tigers do not necessarily need sheer numbers. It’s not like LSU is waning from a lack of potential NFL players. Despite those points, to keep the momentum of the 2019 national championship, a good starting point will be finding at least two top-notch offensive linemen. There could be one potential pitfall.
Recruiting goes in cycles. Regardless of Louisiana’s illustrious high school football reputation, the 2021 class does not possess a single offensive lineman who has earned an offer from the Tigers. Seems odd, but it’s true.
It’s just not the typical year for Louisiana offensive linemen. Perhaps Kenneth Bannister, OL, 6-4, 275, New Orleans (La.) Edna Karr could be a prospect to watch, as he’s a raw talent with upside. Always a good idea to keep the New Orleans pipeline flowing towards Baton Rouge. Here’s a look at Bannister’s film.
While there’s always a prospect with upside like Bannister, or the proverbial late bloomer, Louisiana high school football is known to produce. But the Tigers need a few impact linemen from the 2021 class. With that, the majority of LSU’s attention will go beyond the Louisiana borders. Here are four prospects LSU appears to really want and are possible signees.
Tommy Brockermeyer, OT, 6-6, 285, Fort Worth (Texas) All Saints Episcopal
If you want a prospect that’s as close to college ready as one can be, start with Brockermeyer. He’s the son of Blake Brockermeyer, former Texas Longhorns great and long-time NFL player with the Carolina Panthers, Chicago Bears and Denver Broncos. Brockermeyer is now a defensive analyst at Southern Methodist University.
Tommy Brockermeyer has been taught the game of football from a very early stage of life, and his natural foot quickness, arm length and instincts can all be considered elite. Brockermeyer should be considered as close to a can’t miss prospect as one can find. No reason to go on about Brockermeyer’s exploits, because there are too many to list. Just a great prospect. The film does not lie. Here’s a sample from Brockermeyer’s sophomore year, and it’s already apparent he’s a special player.
Of course Texas is considered the front-runner for Brockermeyer. That’s no reason for LSU to let off the gas. Texas also plays at LSU this season (Sep. 12), so perhaps the Tigers can bring Brockermeyer down to Baton Rouge to watch the game.
With an offer list a mile long, Brockermeyer could go to many programs. Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Michigan, Notre Dame, Iowa and Georgia are just a few of the other programs that offered the Texas’ talent.
Savion Byrd, OL, 6-5, 265, Duncanville (Texas) High School
When considering sheer upside from an already talented prospect, Byrd holds the traits major college football programs like LSU desire. Really athletic, light on his feet, moves well in space, and he’s going to punish defenders. Byrd actually plays defensive line as well.
LSU probably holds a better chance of signing Byrd than some believe. Yes, Texas will be a factor, but again, that game in Death Valley could change some perceptions.
JC Latham, OT, 6-6, 305, Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy
Originally from Mississippi before moving to Wisconsin, Latham wowed people at the Orlando Under Armour Camp, myself included. One of the most impressive frames that anyone would want to work with moving forward, Latham is new to offensive tackle. He played defensive line before making the switch in 2019. Latham transitioned well, and he’s a player with a high ceiling.
Programs from across the land want this young man, and LSU and Ohio State appear to be the best bets right now. Do not discount any other programs, however, as Latham is a possible difference-maker at the all-important left tackle position that programs will continue to pursue.
Tristan Leigh, OT, 6-6, 280, Fairfax (Va.) Robinson
Adept at drive blocking, Leigh can also move his feet really well, and that’s why he can be a left tackle at the college level. One could argue that Leigh would be the most versatile offensive lineman within the class of 2021. Guard or tackle would suit him well.
Clemson might be the team to beat, but a host of other programs including Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Alabama, Virginia Tech, Penn State and Ohio State all want their respective chance to host Leigh for an official visit.
To summarize, LSU’s offensive line depth chart sits in a good position, but the LSU coaching staff needs to capitalize on the 2019 national championship. With another top-notch group of prospects from the class of 2021, the Tigers could vault themselves into elite territory and become a truly dominant group for years to come.