Travin Dural makes a strong case as the state’s top wide receiver for the Class of 2012, meaning that the Breaux Bridge standout was going to draw attention from schools across the country.
The first team to offer: Alabama.
Soon after, the LSU coaches made their move.
Within two weeks, Dural was ready for his move – the final one in his recruiting process.
“I called up LSU and committed this morning,” Dural said. “The coaches went wild. They said that it was the best morning they have had in a while. It’s just an amazing feeling.”
The morning was made better by Lamar Louis, a close friend of Dural’s who also grew up in the Breaux Bridge area. Moments before Dural dialed Les Miles, Louis was on the line with the LSU headman giving his pledge to the Tigers.
“That’s how we planned it,” said Dural of the back-to-back commitments, which came within minutes of each other. “We wanted to do this together. We are staying home to represent the state and keep LSU at the top.”
Though Dural visited Tuscaloosa and said he was intrigued with what the Tide had to offer, the rising senior said his final decision didn’t take much wavering.
“I have always wanted to go to LSU, so people coming up to me and asking me about Alabama and other SEC schools was always funny,” Dural said. “People around here want you to stay home, and that’s what I wanted. I knew it was time to just go ahead and commit, because there wasn’t any school that would mean more to me.”
Dural visited the LSU campus over the weekend, able to take in a scrimmage in Tiger Stadium as well as conversations with all of the staff.
“I had a great time on the visit, and it just made me realize that LSU was where I wanted to be all along,” Dural said. “I was sitting in Tiger Stadium and I looked around and realized that I was living my dream. I had always worked hard at football to get to where I could play in college and be at LSU.
“So why wait? Sitting there in the stands thinking about that made me go ahead and do it. It felt great to get it off my chest. Now I don’t have to deal with any of that pressure my senior year.”
Dural also pointed to the increased contact with the LSU staff as one of the factors that expedited his decision making process.
“At first I was talking a lot with coach Brick (Haley), but over time I started to get to know the rest of the staff, and that made me feel much more comfortable,” he said. “When they offered two Fridays ago I really started hitting up coach Frank (Wilson) more, and we have a really good relationship. Then I got to know coach (Billy) Gonzales, my position coach. He seems like a good coach. I watched him a lot in the scrimmage and he was very intense. The players say he gets a lot out of them.
“After that I started talking with coach Miles here and there, then I decided to call him up today and commit. He said that it made them all really happy and that they were excited about what I bring to the team.”
“They tell me I am part of the Breaux Bridge pipeline,” said Dural, whose commitment comes two months after the Tigers signed his teammate Quentin Thomas. “I know all these guys want to represent for Louisiana and the people that grew up watching us on Friday nights and pulling for us.”
Given the short ride from Breaux Bridge to Baton Rouge, the commitment was welcomed news to the Dural family.
“My mom is really, really happy,” he laughed. “She has always liked LSU and wanted me to be there. After she got on the first visit it was over for her. My grandmother loves LSU too, and my dad happens to be a big fan. They couldn’t have been more excited to hear that I wanted to go ahead and commit. Now they can always come see me play.”
The early three-star prospect compares his game to a current Tiger, former Bastrop standout and the nation’s top receiver: Rueben Randle.
“I have seen his videos, and then last weekend at the scrimmage I watched how he played and thought that I could do a lot of the same things,” said the 6-foot-2, 180-pounder.
“I feel my strengths are the way I can get up over the defender to get the ball and the way I can run away from defenders. I run good routes too, and I think my height and the way I catch the ball with my hands makes me a good prospect for the next level.”
Dural joins Johnson, an early four-star prospect, as the first two wide receiver commitments to LSU’s 2012 class.