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Reports: LSU Pursuing Graduate Transfer Running Back Tre Watson

Cal Bear will be eligible to play right away in 2018.

NCAA Football: California at Washington State James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

Reports surfaced Monday morning that LSU has become a candidate in the recruitment of former California running back Tre Watson, who will be graduating later this spring and transferring.

Late Sunday night, Watson tweeted out that he would be visiting LSU the last weekend of April:

Texas is expected to also receive an official visit this weekend. Watson has also previously visited Texas Tech.

Watson was a three-star recruit in 2014 out of Corona, California. In three years in Berkley, he’s rushed for 1,380 yards at a 5.1 yards per carry average, with eight touchdowns, plus another five receiving scores on 37 catches for 379 yards.

At 5-10, 190 pounds, Watson looks like the prototypical third-down type of back that fits a spread-type offense. With his experience at Cal, that could make him a good fit for what Steve Ensminger wants to implement in 2018. Watson looks like a speedy, one-cut type of runner that can do some damage on the edge and in the screen game.

Watson’s best production came as a junior in 2016, when he ran for 709 yards on 143 carries and caught 21 passes for 241 yards, with four touchdowns each rushing and receiving. He missed most of the 2017 season with injury, and saw junior Patrick Laird emerge as a 1,000-yard rusher.

We’ll see how the next few weeks shake out, but Watson seems like a solid pickup that could help the Tigers in 2018, while also not upsetting the apple cart for the crucial 2019 running back recruiting class.