Lakeland (Fla.) may have
the most D-I talent of any high school in America and its two biggest stars took
an official visit to LSU this weekend in Scout.com 5-star defensive tackle John Brown and 4-star tight end Jordan Hammond.
The coaching staff secured a pledge
over the summer and he has maintained the entire time since then that he is
solid with that pledge and he isn't entertaining any offers from anywhere
Brown, on the other hand, is a
player that Hammond has been recruiting for the Tigers and
the coaches would love nothing more than to gain his signature on signing
The two good friends flew into
Baton Rouge mid-afternoon on Friday and they
spent the night with the coaches and players as they prepared for their Saturday
night clash with Fresno State.
"We ate breakfast and kind of
checked out all of the facilities on Saturday," said Brown, who is rated the No.
4 defensive tackle in the country. "I got a chance to see their academic center
and their weight room before the rain came. Everything was real
After taking in a short lunch,
Brown (6-1, 295, 5.0) and Hammond (6-5, 225, 4.7) fell victim to the rain storm
that tore through Baton
Rouge and unfortunately for their sake they could not see
Tiger Stadium in its true element.
"The rain pretty much hurt the
crowd," Brown said. "We watched the first two quarters and then we went inside
and watched the rest in the recruiting lounge. It was still good despite all of
One thing the rain could not ruin
was the opportunity for Brown and Hammond to hang out with the LSU players.
"We hung around Pep Levingston,
Troy Giddens, Charles Scott, Glenn Dorsey, Al Woods, Danny McCray, and a few
others," said Brown. "The players were real cool to hang with. They were real
cool people and treated everyone the same."
Defensive line coach Earl Lane and Les
Miles spent a lot of time with Brown and Hammond and they made it a point to let
Brown know how bad they wanted him to accompany Hammond to Baton
Rouge next fall.
"We talked a lot," said Brown.
"They were just telling me how bad they wanted me and how good their academics
were. We talked a lot about their defense too. I like how the defense plays and
you could see why they are so good. Their scheme is a lot like ours and their
d-linemen are the strength of the team."
Brown said that he is planning on
setting up official visits to Alabama,
Florida, Florida State and Ole Miss before he makes a
decision. When asked if this visit did anything to help LSU's cause, he replied,
"It did. The rain kind of put a damper on things but I think I fit in well with
the players over there."
The rain wasn't the only thing that
put a damper on the trip because when I spoke to Brown and Hammond they were
sitting in the Atlanta airport because they missed their
"We were late getting to the
airport in Baton Rouge," Hammond said. "They
couldn't even check our bags and they are having to Fed Ex our luggage to us.
We're on standby right now for a flight that leaves at 6:30 tonight and if we
don't get that one then there is one at 7:30. If we don't get either of those
then I guess we will have to wait until tomorrow."
This trip for Hammond was all about
getting the chance to see a night game in Tiger Stadium and needles to say
things did not go according to plan.
"It was pretty good," Hammond said. "I didn't
get a chance to enjoy the game like I wanted. I watched a quarter or two outside
and then I went and watched the rest in the recruiting lounge. I didn't get to
experience it like I wanted but I still had a good time."
The nation's 11th ranked
tight end said that he was still glad that he took the trip because it gave him
a little more time to talk to the coaches.
"They were telling me how they
can't wait for me to get there and how they're looking forward to me playing
said. "I came over the summer and saw everything so there really wasn't anything
new for me to see. They just really took the time to get to know me better and
make me feel more comfortable with the staff as a whole."
There had been some talk that
Hammond may try
and graduate in December so that he can enroll at LSU in January but he said
that he is going to graduate with his class in May.
He said that he is going to use
that time to strengthen his knee and get it ready for when he reports for summer
school in June.
Speaking of the torn ACL, how is
his recovery going?
"It's doing real good," he said. "I
got another month and then I'll start to cut on it. I'll be ready to go when I
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Lakeland (Fla.) may have the most D-I talent of any high school in America and its two biggest stars took an official visit to LSU this weekend in Scout.com 5-star defensive tackle John Brown and 4-star tight end Jordan Hammond.
First they dealt with the rain then it was a missed plane.