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February 26, 2:00 PM ET
Chat with Gary Laney

Gary Laney
  (2:00 PM)

With the NFL combine wrapped up and 2014 recruiting coming off a big weekend, we're ready to chat. Let's get it started.

Kevin (Houston)

All is great in Tiger Nation as Edward Paris commits yesterday! Who do you think will be the next to commit? My bet (and hope) is Tony Brown. Do you think the Paris commit gets the ball rolling?

Gary Laney
  (2:03 PM)

I think Tony Brown is a good guess, although guessing which one is tough. I mean, who would have guessed on Donnie Alexander? I've been hearing Speedy Noil might commit for a long time now, so that wouldn't shock me either.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

Who will be the Starting Quarterback for LSU in 2013?

Gary Laney
  (2:04 PM)

There are a lot of fans who would like to see somebody else, but Mettenberger will be the quarterback unless something unfortunate or weird happens. Look, he's probably a pro. LSU fans should look forward to his development.

Kevin (Houston)

I'm hearing rumors LSU is still looking for a kick off game to open 2014 and they are looking to Atlanta and the Chick Fil A kick off. BUT, I've heard a few rumors that they are looking here in Houston at reliant! Why doesn't reliant have more kickoffs?? And why hasn't LSU looked to play here before? Houston has one of the biggest LSU alumni bases in Texas! I'm excited to go watch Mississippi State play OSU here next season and just wish LSU would jump into this!Also wish the Baseball team would get in on the Astros Foundation College Classic one of these years!! This weekend is going to have some GREAT games!! Can't wait to see Rice, A&M, and UNC!

Gary Laney
  (2:07 PM)

Two things: 1. LSU officials have said publicly they are looking at a neutral site game to start 2014. 2. Houston is starting a neutral site game in 2013 at Reliant. This year it will be Oklahoma State vs. Mississippi State. LSU would seem to be a natural fit for the 2014 game, giving LSU's fan base in the city. I would not be shocked at all if the Tigers don't end up in your city to start the 2014 season.

Joe Dirt (Denham Springs)

Will LSU go after a quarterback this year after getting two in 2013? Are there any in state?

Gary Laney
  (2:09 PM)

I think LSU goes after one this year. The Tigers went after two last year because they failed to land one in 2012 after Gunner Kiel backed out and Jeremy Liggins was ineligible...

Gary Laney
  (2:15 PM)

As for in-state prospects, I think there are three who stand out in Donovan Isom from Destrehan (Jordan Jefferson's alma mater), Quentin Gibson from Archbishop Shaw in the New Orleans suburbs and Brandon Harris from Parkway in Bossier. I'm not sold on any of the three proving to be LSU-worthy. LSU hasn't taken one from in the state since Jefferson.

Gary Laney
  (2:15 PM)

Guys. Sorry for the delay. Had a technical glitch, but we're back rolling.

Kevin (Houston)

If/When tony Brown commits, does LSU need any more DBs? That would be 2 safeties and 2 Cornerbacks. With the CB class in 2013, how many are they really trying to get? I understand taking another safety due to missing out there in 2013.

Gary Laney
  (2:17 PM)

Kevin, I think LSU needs at least five DBs in this class and at least 2-3 that can play saety. Hootie Jones of Monroe, La./Neville is on a very short list of top safeties in the country. I think you have to go after him hard even if you think four is enough. I've also heard Voorhies may get a look at WR, so there may be a need for another safety.

blake (indy)

Do you think 'honey badger' will be drafted? If so when?

Gary Laney
  (2:18 PM)

Except for the bench press, he had a pretty good combine. I think he'll be drafted somewhere in the middle rounds. Around 4-5.

Kevin (Houston)

Gary, I guess I have the same question about WR? LSU had a big haul at the position in 2013. Are they just looking to get the 3 big in states? Quinn, Dupre, and Noil?

Gary Laney
  (2:20 PM)

I think all three are targets, no doubt. I like LSU's chances for all three. Noil sounds like a lean. LSU got on Dupre fairly early and Quinn comes from an LSU family. Of the three, Quinn might be the toughest sell because he's getting a lot of good offers from passing teams right now. He's a little easier to scout because he's a productive player in a passing offense. That allows more offers to come in quicker. You really need to see Dupre and Noil in a camp setting. Dupre doesn't get many passes thrown to him and Noil is a high school QB.

Gary Laney
  (2:21 PM)

Of course, LSU is sold on both Noil and Dupre based on their long relationships with in-state players and their camp performances.

Josie (St. Tammany)

Is LSU going to be able to beat TCU on the road (I know it's a neutral site, but it's in Arlington).

Gary Laney
  (2:24 PM)

That's going to be one of the interesting games of the season in my opinion. For LSU, it's going to be about the fronts. Does it have a playmaker on the defensive line? Who will step up at left tackle? There's going to be a sense of urgency for developing talent in those areas quickly and that will be a big test.

Kevin (Houston)

Life as a Tiger Fan outside Baton Rouge is tough.... ::Sigh:: I just wanna see my Tigers!! I am going to strangle someone to get LSU @ A&M Baseball tickets!

Gary Laney
  (2:26 PM)

Be peaceful about it...Did you make the football game in College Station?

Tony (Richmond, CA)

Who are the Les Miles top priorities in the 2014 recruiting class?

Gary Laney
  (2:27 PM)

Biggest priority by a long shot is RB. LSU lost two after 2012 and didn't sign any in 2013. They will lose at least one, maybe two, after 2013. They cleared the deck to make it attractive for Leonard Fournette. But they can't just sign him. They needs at least two, probably three at the position...

Gary Laney
  (2:28 PM)

Besides RB, they need at least 5 DBs and at least a a few WRs.

Steven (Orlando, FL)

Any talent newcomers to watch for at defensive back this year? Who do you think will start at DB's?

Gary Laney
  (2:30 PM)

My starters are Jalen Mills and Jalen Collins at CB, Ronald Martin at FS and Craig Loston at SS. I'm looking at true freshman Tre'Davious White pushing the two Jalens and Corey Thompson pushing for a nickel role or as a swing backup at safety. I see Micah Eugene resuming his Dime back role. I think the key here is there are good, young corners. Aside from White, Jeryl Brazil is such a dynamic athlete, LSU will be looking for a role for him, possibly in the secondary, maybe on offense.

justin (lakeland fl)

do you see jeremy hill taking over the rb job and getting more carries this year?

Gary Laney
  (2:31 PM)

I see his total carries going up because he'll be the main back from Day 1 where last year, he started the season as a little-used backup and saw his playing time go up as the season progressed. But I don't think he's out there every series. We'll see Blue. We'll see Hilliard. We may see Magee back there.

Joe Dirt (Denham Springs)

How good of a class can LSU get this year? It seems like they are off to a good start.

Gary Laney
  (2:34 PM)

Honestly, I think the road to a No. 1 class is in front of LSU. They are already doing better in Texas than last year and Texas is going to have a better year than 2013. And LSU has an opportunity to pick up ELITE players in-state, much like the 2011 class when Anthony Johnson and La'el Collins were considered among the top 1-3 players at their respective positions. This year, Fournette and Cameron Robinson are likely to be top 1-2 at their positions and Hootie Jones and Gerald Willis aren't far behind at theirs. Add in Tony Brown from Beaumont, Texas (which sits about 15 minutes from the Louisiana state line) and you have a chance at at least five players who might be in the top 4-5 players at their positions.

Gary Laney
  (2:35 PM)

If you get all those guys -- Brown, Fournette, Robinson, Willis, Jones -- to go with guys like Paris, the wide receivers in state ... that's a potentially epic class.

Ben (Richmond, KY)

Gary, what is your opinion of Miles and Saban courting a 14 year old child. Personally, I think LSU's offer is a little more acceptable since the kid basically lives on LSU's campus.

Gary Laney
  (2:39 PM)

I'm not really sure the context of the Alabama offer. I was at the LSU camp where Dylan was offered. What happened there was Dylan showed up and more than held his own against players four years older than him and I sensed the offer was sort of recognition with how well he camped that weekend. I don't think anybody was expecting the offer to be accepted and I don't think there was any expectation that the kid can just shut down his development because his future is set. It was more just a nod to what he did that weekend. The kid really did take it to much older players that weekend. He's already putting up testing numbers (like 40's) that most high school players will never dream of putting up.

Joe Dirt (Denham Springs)

Who impressed you the most at the combine?

Gary Laney
  (2:42 PM)

I think Mingo busting that 4.58 in the 40 was huge. His stock went up. I think Mathieu had a decent showing. Eric Reid running a 4.53 was nice for him because he's seen as more of a big, physical safety and it showed that he's not a step slow at his size.

Henry (Montgomery, AL)

With the two qbs enrolling early, is Stephen Rivers being challenged for the number 2 spot?

Gary Laney
  (2:46 PM)

Chances are pretty good unless the kid's in a situation where he absolutely needs money. If you need money, you can go overseas and make a good, six-figure living playing in a Euroleague that's probably a step up from major Division I ball. Let's make that clear. But, if he doesn't NEED money, it would seem the better play would be to come back to school. With that body, he could develop his game where he can get first-round money next year, something that would take him years to try to make up for by leaving a year earlier and likely going to Europe or trying to make a roster as an undrafted free agent or a second round guy.

Gary Laney
  (2:46 PM)

But just know, I'm no Marty Blake here.

Mike (Atl )

How much are people underrating the value of Les playing kids early? Most people point to losing so many underclassmen, but fail to realize Les plays as many true freshmen and sophomores as anyone in the SEC. They may be young, but they have experience.

Gary Laney
  (2:49 PM)

They have to play kids early Mike. And I'm not saying that because they have no other players, but because that's what they sell kids on, so they want to deliver on their word. They are selling themselves as a program that will get you ready for pro football and get you on the field early. The two tie together. But having so many kids leave early for the NFL, that creates a need for immediate help, which helps you attract players who might be good enough for the three-year cycle. I like to say Les is becoming the John Calipari of college football.

Gary Laney
  (2:50 PM)

Having said that, I'll add two things:1. Les graduates his players that aren't leaving early. They've been No. 2 in the SEC in graduation rate behind Vandy the last few years. So it's not strictly an NFL factory and 2. The big test here is can LSU win big. Are they destined to be a program that loses 1-2 close games a year and never wins a national title because they are ALWAYS young? That's a legitimate question.

Ben (Richmond, KY)

Who do you believe will be the starting 2 defensive ends on opening day? Rasco compares a lot to Montgomery while Hunter and Maclin look like Mingo prototypes, and then there's Allen along with the upcoming recruiting class. Plenty of players to choose from.

Gary Laney
  (2:53 PM)

I kind of like Rasco and Hunter as a pair. I love Hunter's athleticism and body type. I think Rasco sort of worked his way into the rotation last year, which is impressive considering who the top four were entering the year. Allen's a wild card. He's been a guy I've been hearing for two years was just outside the rotation, very close to getting there. This was to be his year, but alas, he's got the knee injury now. If he's healthy, he may take one of the starting spots.

Gary Laney
  (2:53 PM)

I kind of like Rasco and Hunter as a pair. I love Hunter's athleticism and body type. I think Rasco sort of worked his way into the rotation last year, which is impressive considering who the top four were entering the year. Allen's a wild card. He's been a guy I've been hearing for two years was just outside the rotation, very close to getting there. This was to be his year, but alas, he's got the knee injury now. If he's healthy, he may take one of the starting spots.

Gary Laney
  (2:53 PM)

I kind of like Rasco and Hunter as a pair. I love Hunter's athleticism and body type. I think Rasco sort of worked his way into the rotation last year, which is impressive considering who the top four were entering the year. Allen's a wild card. He's been a guy I've been hearing for two years was just outside the rotation, very close to getting there. This was to be his year, but alas, he's got the knee injury now. If he's healthy, he may take one of the starting spots.

Gary Laney
  (2:53 PM)

I kind of like Rasco and Hunter as a pair. I love Hunter's athleticism and body type. I think Rasco sort of worked his way into the rotation last year, which is impressive considering who the top four were entering the year. Allen's a wild card. He's been a guy I've been hearing for two years was just outside the rotation, very close to getting there. This was to be his year, but alas, he's got the knee injury now. If he's healthy, he may take one of the starting spots.

Gary Laney
  (2:53 PM)

I kind of like Rasco and Hunter as a pair. I love Hunter's athleticism and body type. I think Rasco sort of worked his way into the rotation last year, which is impressive considering who the top four were entering the year. Allen's a wild card. He's been a guy I've been hearing for two years was just outside the rotation, very close to getting there. This was to be his year, but alas, he's got the knee injury now. If he's healthy, he may take one of the starting spots.

Henry (Montgomery, AL)

Last year 15 different freshmen started...do you forsee that number rising this year?

Gary Laney
  (3:00 PM)

Sorry for another technical glitch...

Gary Laney
  (3:00 PM)

I'd say about the same on the true freshmen. They are older on the offensive line than last year, didn't take any RBs, they are older at WR, QB and LB. I can see freshmen impacting the D-line, secondary and TE.

Henry (Montgomery, AL)

When does Spring practice start and when is the Spring game?

Gary Laney
  (3:01 PM)

Starts March 14. Spring game is April 20.

Brett (Lake Charles)

Sam Montgomery's recent comments about his selective hustle, based on LSU's opponent -- how many draft rounds will it cost him?

Gary Laney
  (3:02 PM)

My guess? Probably one round. Which is significant money. There's plenty of time for him to make up for it between now and the draft, but it's always going to be there.

Jose Juan (Memorial City)

Why is LSU having more success in Texas this year, getting Hardeman and Paris?

Gary Laney
  (3:04 PM)

Jose, I look at 2013 as an anomaly. I don't think their Texas recruiting was affected much at all. They missed on a couple of guys, but didn't target as many as they have in the past. I think Texas is more target rich in 2014 and LSU has already landed a couple of them. I think people read too much into the lack of Texas recruits in 2013.

Gary Laney
  (3:05 PM)

I went a little over. Sorry for a couple of dead spots in there. The server seemed to slow to a crawl a couple times. But good chat. Same time, same place next week guys. Looking forward to it.