Linebacker is one of those positions entering the offseason with a lot of expected turnover.
Damone Clark is moving on to the NFL while Micah Baskerville and Mike Jones both have important decisions to make on their futures in Baton Rouge. What the pair ultimately decide will dictate just how big of a rebuild this room will have to go through in 2022.
But in the meantime, Brian Kelly and the LSU staff are building towards the future, most recently adding Virginia linebacker West Weeks to the 2022 transfer class. For a team that was getting dangerously low on numbers in recent weeks with all of the players entering the portal, the Tigers have spent this week reshaping the future of a lot of positions.
The addition of Weeks now puts the program at seven total transfers with more likely on the way. But taking a look at Weeks' addition and what it means for the linebacker group in particular is interesting.
Though he'll be coming off a broken leg suffered at the end of Virginia's season, there's plenty to love about his potential in this room. He recorded 31 tackles, 15 of them solo tackles, had one sack and five passes defended this season as a freshman. That's pretty good experience for a first year player to have under his belt.
Weeks will obviously have to fit in with the existing talent on the roster, including Greg Penn, Josh White, Antoine Sampah and Phillip Webb. If LSU does indeed lose both Jones and Baskerville to the draft, the depth will be even more of an issue, which could propel Weeks into a more integral role upon arrival.
Getting either Jones, Baskerville or both would really change the outlook on this group. Baskerville had without question his most impressive season and Jones really settled into the inside linebacker role as 2021 progressed. A season as the full time starter would help both improve their draft stock.
It wouldn't be a bit surprising to see Kelly add one more veteran linebacker with one of the now remaining 12 spots via the portal or freshman class. Despite committing to Texas A&M, Harold Perkins is still a target LSU is very much in pursuit of and this class does have inside linebacker DeMario Tolan signed in 2022.
Defensive coordinator Matt House is still with Kansas City Chiefs at the moment which does put the Tigers in a kind of awkward position when making pitches to transfers and recruits. House, who has a background with linebackers and is set to coach the position once arriving after the Chiefs season is over, can't be in the room to help sell a vision to these players which can make it tough.
LSU has done a solid job overall of finding veteran talent in recent weeks at a number of key spots, particularly in the secondary. But if this team wants to get back in the upper echelon of SEC programs next year, it must hit on a few more freshmen and transfers who can be immediate impact players.