LSU Heats Up on the Recruiting Trail

LSU’s recruiting has been on fire lately, gaining three defensive line commitments over two days. Appropriately, the fireworks started on Independence Day with a commitment from defensive lineman Zion Williams. The following day the Tigers managed to flip defensive lineman Brandon Brown’s commitment from Texas to LSU. Finally, defensive end Damien Shanklin committed to LSU on Friday afternoon.

LSU Heats Up on the Recruiting Trail: Beefing Up the Defensive Line

Zion Williams – Defensive Lineman

Four-star defensive lineman Zion Williams got the ball rolling with his commitment on Thursday morning. The Lufkin, TX native posted a short video on social media to announce his pledge to LSU. At 6’4” and 300 pounds, Williams has the size to play in the middle as a traditional nose tackle. As a bonus, he has relatively light feet and active hands when shedding blockers.

Former Texas defensive line coach Bo Davis maintained contact with Williams after accepting the same position at LSU.

“I think he got a head start before anybody because he was the first coach I really got to know well. He knows me well as a person. LSU feels like the parts of my town where I grew up. It’s been fun down there so far,” Williams stated to Thebengaltiger.com.

Brandon Brown – Defensive Lineman

Brandon Brown of Melbourne, FL was the next prospect to commit to the Tigers. Brown previously committed to Bo Davis and Texas last December. Though he never publicly backed off his commitment, he continued to take visits. Brown visited Tennessee, Texas, and USC in June. In the end, Davis won out again to regain his commitment.

Agility and power define Brown’s game at this point. His athleticism jumps off the screen considering he’s listed at 290 pounds. For example, one play from his junior year shows him reading a screen play but resisting the urge to get to the quarterback. He then intercepted the pass with one hand and returned it for a touchdown.

Damien Shanklin – Edge

Edge prospect Damien Shanklin continued the momentum, giving his pledge to the Tigers. The Indianapolis native is the top-ranked player in the state of Indiana. LSU beat out Notre Dame and Ohio State among other powerhouse programs closer to his hometown to gain his commitment.

Shanklin has prototypical size at this stage for an edge rusher at 6’5” and 230 pounds. There’s not much he’s missing as a prospect. He shows the speed to blow by tackles and the strength to set the edge. His lateral movement defies his size, fueling his ability to execute multiple pass-rush moves.

Shanklin was recruited by defensive ends coach Kevin Peoples. He’s previously mentioned his desire to play in the SEC, so it’s no surprise that Alabama was also in the hunt. An early summer official visit to LSU cemented its place at the top of his list.

A Snapshot of LSU’s Recruiting

LSU now has two defensive linemen and two edge/defensive ends committed for the class of 2025. The Tigers currently have a total of 15 commitments and 247Sports’ sixth-ranked class. Only six of the 15 are defensive players, so the staff won’t slow down anytime soon in efforts to improve the roster. Even though the Tigers missed out on former commitment Dakorien Moore, there’s still plenty of firepower committed offensively.

The Bo Davis hire has quickly paid dividends after the Tigers missed out on a few critical transfer targets in the 2024 class. Of course, continued success with high school recruiting will reduce the Tigers’ reliance on the transfer portal. Kevin Peoples is also making a splash with two top-10 edge prospects currently committed to LSU.

Photo Credit: Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports

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