If there's one thing that you need to know about future LSU quarterback Garrett Nussmeier, it's that he's a leader. That extends not just on the field but off it as well. Not only was Nussmeier the brainchild behind last weekend's recruiting visit for the 2021 class but he also arranged donations for his hometown of Lake Charles, which was devastated by Hurricane Laura a few weeks back.
Though he now lives in Flower Mound, Texas, Nussmeier has always considered Louisiana and specifically Lake Charles to be his home. So when Nussmeier saw the storm was making a direct approach to his hometown, Nussmeier knew he needed to take action.
In the weeks since the storm hit, Nussmeier and his family have made three separate trips to Lake Charles dropping off supplies to an area that is now trying to rebuild.
"Lake Charles is my home, I go back there at least two or three times a year," Nussmeier said. "Moving around so much, that's been the one stable place for me, that's where I learned a lot of stuff. Sitting here on my couch in Dallas and seeing the national news that my hometown was about to get ravaged by a possibly Category 5 hurricane, that hurt."
Nussmeier's cousin and mother made separate trips right after the storm and Nussmeier himself dropped off a third load of supplies on his way back home after a productive weekend with some fellow recruits in Baton Rouge.
In total, 14 members of the 2021 class visited Baton Rouge over the weekend to check out the LSU campus, neighboring restaurants and popular spots around the city. There were two goals Nussmeier wanted to accomplish with the trip.
One was getting to know his fellow committed players in the 2021 class a little better and the other was making the uncommitted players feel like Baton Rouge could be a place they one day could call home. Originally the plan was for Nussmeier to make one trip with a few guys in his Texas area, Landon Jackson and Jojo Earle, but it quickly escalated into a much bigger venture.
"It kind of just turned into something that became a huge deal for us, a lot of our top prospects were there but it wasn't even really about that," Nussmeier said. "It was more about them getting to build a relationship with us and us all getting a feel for each other since we're going to be spending the next four years with each other."
The group met up to visit Mike the Tiger before taking a general tour of campus and grabbing a bite to eat at Ruffino's. The night was capped off with a trip to Top Golf which was fun for Nussmeier, who is an avid golfer.
"Obviously I have the best swing but the most surprising golf swing was Rae [Raesjon Davis], he kind of put it together towards the end," Nussmeier said. "Maason [Smith] was definitely the second best though."
Korey Foreman, Maason Smith, Sage Ryan, Brian Thomas, Tristan Leigh, Savion Byrd and Michael Trigg were the top uncommitted players who decided to make the trip. Based off of what he saw and talking with the players, Nussmeier got the impression that all of the uncommitted prospects enjoyed the experience.
"I think they all liked it a lot, Korey had never seen it before so him getting to see it was awesome. I do think the most important thing for him was getting to hang out with us," Nussmeier said.
Byrd actually made the trip with Nussmeier and the two got to know each other really well in the seven-hour car ride from Dallas to Baton Rouge. It was also the first time Nussmeier got to meet Davis and Chris Hilton, two of his fellow commits that he communicates with daily on group chat but had yet to meet in person.
Nussmeier and Davis have been the two leaders of the class in terms of making sure all of the commits are on the same page about trying to get some of the other top prospects in the class to come join the program.
"We all talk about it to be honest, we think it's important that we're all doing our part to get more players to come play with us," Nussmeier said. "Rae does a good job of recruiting his butt off on the west coast and I think all of the other recruits do a great job as well. There's always a name being thrown around in the group chat because we want those uncommitted guys to know that this class is a family and when they commit, they're a part of us."