Well, a bit of bad news to follow a dominant Saturday victory. Wonder recruit and Baton Rouge native Dylan Moses decided he would commit to Alabama and shut down his recruiting process today.
Ready to work #TheProcess pic.twitter.com/zCoH9GlL0y— King Ⓜ️oses (@Dylan1Moses_) October 2, 2016
This is shocking news after he announced a week ago he intended on taking all of his visits and moving his announcement date back until January 1st, 2017. Moses, you’ll remember, committed to LSU as a Sophomore, before decommitting last August prior to his Junior season. He elected to enroll at IMG Academy for his Senior year, leaving Baton Rouge, which didn’t seem to spell good news for the home team.
Still, the Crystal Ball picks leaned heavily LSU. Most assumed it would be a long and winding process but he’d eventually wind up back at LSU. Insert not great bob dot gif here.
My first question would be: Is this really over? Moses has been all over the map with his recruitment. As I laid out, a week ago he’s talking about taking every visit and extending his timeline. Now it’s over? Saban is the master on the trail and can apply pressure like no other. I have no doubt they wowed him in Tuscaloosa and impressed on him that they didn’t really have time to wait around.
Secondly, this is a pretty huge loss for LSU. Moses has lost some shine (more on this in a moment) as a recruit, but he’s still an athletic freak with unreal upside. What really hurts is that LSU needs to continue to add bodies to an already thin LB core. Next season they will lose Kendell Beckwith and Duke Riley and be looking for more players. Where does Aranda turn if Moses isn’t one of the options?
Finally, the question looms about Moses football skills. He’s got the first guy off the bus thing down. This guy will crush any athletic test you put in front of him. But, for whatever reason, all of that hasn’t translated onto the football field yet. He’s a good, not great player. Recruiting services have started to dock him, after he was long considered the consensus no. 1 player nationally. I take issue with their rationale, as we’ve long known he’s a physical freak that needed to develop on-field abilities, so why is that suddenly a reason to drop his ranking? Nevertheless, it’s an interesting question and one I would be asking if he announced today he was coming to LSU and not Bama. This isn’t, “Oh he’s going to Bama, he sucks now;” so please don’t misread me. Moses has the abilities to become one of the best players in college football, but wherever he goes, that coaching staff will have to mine it out of him.
Stephen Guidry Decommits
In another bit of un-welcoming news, WR Stephen Guidry decided to go ahead and decommit due to the coaching change:
Thanks Lsu I just have to reconsider some things and look out for myself and my family. pic.twitter.com/sYswAC3yME— Stephen Guidry (@KillsGettem) October 2, 2016
This is interesting in that it took a whole week for him to go public and following such a strong showing. Usually these types of things happen in the immediate fall out. I have no inside information here, but I do wonder if Orgeron is beginning to re-evaluate the class. He was the recruiting coordinator previously, but he was also taking orders from Miles. Did he think Guidry’s scholarship would be better used elsewhere?
Guidry does seem like a key piece. He’s a JUCO WR that should be ready to start upon arrival. LSU has already lost John Diarse, Trey Quinn and Tyron Johnson over the last offseason. Malachi Dupre was thought to be a potential NFL draft pick, though his 2016 struggles may have put a hold on that decision.
Guidry does list LSU as his top school, but says he needs to “think about [himself] and [his] family.”
Ultimately, these types of things are to be expected in the midst of a coaching change, even with the recruiting ace currently auditioning on the job. It’s easy ammo for other teams to use against LSU. This is the reality of recruiting and if you were a parent of a recruit, or a recruit himself, you wouldn’t likely feel super confident about the level of uncertainty in coaching changes. What will the new coach be like? What’s the scheme?What if the new coach doesn’t want me? So on and so forth.
I do think this staff can hold together most of the pieces, but this may be a class that falls to the back of the top 10 by signing day. Just last season Georgia finished 8th and USC finished 10th while undergoing coaching changes. Georgia overhauled their staff and USC kept a lot intact including promoting their interim head coach. So there’s some hope that a strong class can be salvaged.
LSU is currently ranked 4th overall nationally with 19 commitments.