Print and Go Back ESPN.com: College Football [Print without images]

Saturday, March 31, 2012
Karl Malone Jr. commits to LSU

By David Helman
GeauxTigerNation

BATON ROUGE -- It was a safe bet heading into the weekend that LSU would pick up some commitments from its 2012 spring game. That proved to be true on Saturday.

The latest commit to join LSU's ranks for its 2013 class is offensive guard Karl Malone Jr. out of Cedar Creek School in Ruston, La. The son of NBA legend Karl Malone, Malone Jr. (or K.J.) let the LSU coaching staff know he was on board after Saturday's spring game, according to his high school coach Ben Haddox.

"He committed with coach (Les) Miles this afternoon, about an hour and a half ago, probably," Haddox said. "It's something he's been thinking about. There's a lot of pressure on these kids, at 16 years old, to make these kinds of decisions, and I think that's been weighing on him. However, he has handled it great."

At 6-foot-4, 290 pounds, Malone Jr. looks likely to be a monstrous addition to one of the SEC's biggest offensive lines. As a part of the Tigers' dozens of big-name visitors this weekend, Haddox said Malone Jr. wasn't necessarily intent on committing Saturday, but the trip swayed him.

"He came in today open-minded, wanting to keep his options open," Haddox said. "But I think once he got down here and had the experience he had today, he just felt like this is where he wanted to be."

Haddox said it was actually the input of some of LSU's past and present offensive linemen that helped Malone Jr. make his decision.

"I can't say enough about the LSU staff and the support staff today -- (former center and current LSU graduate assistant) Ben Wilkerson and (tackle) Chris Davenport have just been great guys to talk to today," Haddox said. "They had a lot of information and advice, and I know (Malone Jr.) took everything they had to say to heart. Ben is actually still hanging out with us right now and talking to K.J., and they've just been real great in this process."

Malone Jr.'s pledge gives LSU its eighth overall commitment, and the Tigers' second along the offensive line, to go along with guard Josh Boutte. After true freshman tackle Vadal Alexander put on a show during Saturday's scrimmage, it looks like Malone Jr.'s commitment gives the Tigers a hefty set of building blocks for the future.