LSU Football Recruiting: 6 2013 Commits Who Will Start as Freshmen
A superb class on national signing day may give the LSU Tigers the momentum it needs to win the SEC West next year.
The Tigers not only secured their future with young, talented prospects, they also found players who are capable of starting right away.
With a nation-leading 10 juniors declaring for the NFL draft, LSU will have plenty of holes to fill on both sides of the ball.
Here are the incoming recruits best suited for the job.
There's no reason to believe Tashawn Bower couldn't come in and start right away for LSU.
Bower was the surprise pickup for the Tigers after he began the day flirting with Florida while being committed to Auburn.
Considering the departures of Sam Montgomery and Barkevious Mingo at the defensive end position, it's safe to say Bower made the right call.
With his 6'5", 241-pound body frame mixed with his 4.8 40-yard dash speed, Bower combines the power and speed that defensive coordinator John Chavis looks for on the outside.
Bower's athletic ability should place him on the opposite side of Jermauria Rasco on the defensive line in 2013.
Fort Minor's song "Where'd You Go" fits as the perfect theme for LSU's defense right about now.
Look around the defensive line, folks. Not too many familiar faces staying put, huh? No Bennie Logan, no Josh Downs, no Montgomery or Mingo in sight.
Fear not—help is on the way. Reaching out is a helping hand in the form of a 6'4", 270-pound defensive lineman from North Carolina.
His name is Greg Gilmore, and judging by his 4-star rating, he's pretty good. But don't just take 247Sports' word for it. Watch the video embedded in the slide and take a good look for yourself.
Anthony Johnson will be the anchor on the defensive line next year for the Tigers, but young studs like Gilmore and Frank Herron should receive plenty of playing time alongside him.
Barring no academic eligibility problems, Quantavius Leslie should start right away for the Tigers in the fall.
Zach Mettenberger had to be giddy like a school girl when LSU signed Leslie. He's a 6'4", 190-pound receiver who can stretch the field vertically.
More importantly, he has great length to go up and snatch the ball out of the air. That makes him a primary target near the red zone.
LSU has great receivers returning in Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry, and though they are explosive, they lack that prototypical size needed for the position.
Look for Leslie to add that dynamic to this receiving corps.
This is one of the greatest offensive line classes that Les Miles has brought to LSU since he first stepped in the door.
Leading the way in this spectacular class is 4-star offensive tackle Ethan Pocic. At 6'7" and 280 pounds, Pocic towered over the opposition in high school, and he'll likely do the same in college.
However, he's going to need great athletic ability if he plans on stopping the speed rushes by these great SEC defensive ends.
Scouts believe he has it. LSU will look to fill the hole Chris Faulk left at left tackle next season, and if Pocic is as good as advertised, he could claim the position as a true freshman.
Considering Les Miles expertise at coaching offensive linemen, Pocic should be ready to contribute in 2013.
Kendell Beckwith will find a way to get onto the football field in 2013.
He's simply too talented to stay on the sidelines. The 4-star defensive end/outside linebacker stands at 6'2" and 225 pounds with a 4.8 40-yard dash time.
Beckwith just about did it all on both sides of the ball in high school because he was a great athlete. But at LSU, he should contribute as either a defensive end or linebacker.
As far as 2013 is concerned, look for Beckwith to contribute early on as an outside linebacker. In the future, he may become a full-fledged defensive end as he grows more into his body and puts on weight.
Beckwith gives Chavis plenty of possibilities on defense, and that's obviously an advantage for LSU.
LSU needs a playmaking tight end, and the Tigers may have found one in DeSean Smith.
The Tigers very rarely used tight ends in 2013, which was a shame after fans saw how effective Travis Dickson was against Ole Miss.
Dickson is coming back for his junior season, but does he really stack up athletically to Smith?
Smith is a 4-star tight end from Barbe High School. NFL draft analyst Mike Detillier said in an interview with DandyDon.com that Smith is the best tight end he's seen in the state in more than 10 years.
With Smith's abilities, he can provide a lot of mismatches for the Tigers offense in 2013.