The LSU Tigers are taking a new approach on offense this season with former Baltimore Ravens coordinator Cam Cameron now calling plays. Quintessential field-stretching receiver Trey Quinn's commitment ensures the altered attack will have a new weapon in 2014.
The 6'1", 200-pound senior wideout opted to stay close to home (Lake Charles, La.) when he delivered a verbal pact with the Tigers on Saturday, Aug. 17. Quinn is listed as the nation's 12th-ranked receiver, a top-10 Louisiana prospect and four-star recruit in 247Sports cumulative rankings.
The state is stacked with elite pass catchers in the 2014 class and LSU landed one of its top targets in Quinn. The Tigers remain on the hunt for Malachi Dupri and Speedy Noil, who each hail from New Orleans and earned five-star labels according to 247Sports cumulative rankings.
LSU edged out a deep list of suitors to claim Quinn, including Clemson, Texas, Notre Dame, Ole Miss, Auburn and Arkansas, according to 247Sports.
The Barbe High School star is within striking distance of the national high school receiving record. A monster junior season (2,141 yards and 26 touchdowns on 115 catches) gave Quinn 4,649 career receiving yards.
That leaves him 1,707 yards shy of the record (6,356 yards), set in 2011 by current University of Missouri receiver Dorial Green-Beckham.
Quinn, who became the 14th member of LSU's 2014 recruiting class, is a perfect fit for the new style of offense. The Tigers have never implemented a flashy game plan on that side of the ball, and while that won't change under the direction of Cameron, there is a lot more flexibility for fireworks to happen on any play.
LSU will implement a quicker-paced rhythm and routinely move running backs in a variety of spaces, particularly in the passing game. Quinn, who runs a 4.39 forty-yard-dash per 247Sports, extends defenses with his quickness and helps keep safeties from roaming toward the middle of the field, opening things up for intermediate passes and check-downs between the hash marks.
Perhaps more important than his downfield speed is Quinn's ability to shift gears when cutting into a crossing pattern. His precision route running stands out several times on tape and it routinely leaves defenders eating dirt in Quinn's wake, especially when they're anticipating a seam route.
While Quinn will surely arrive in Baton Rogue with expectations to contribute early, there won't be a ton of pressure on him to do it. LSU implements a variety of underclassmen atop its depth chart.
Junior Odell Beckham could be swayed to leap into the NFL Draft if things click with quarterback Zach Mettenberg this season, but that's far from a sure thing. The 2013 two-deep at wide receiver could easily return intact next year barring injuries, leaving little room for Quinn to compete for a starting gig.
Head coach Les Miles is likely to give Quinn an opportunity to work out of the slot as he grows comfortable with the quicker college game and complicated SEC defensive schemes. It wouldn't come as a shock if a polished product like Quinn continued to build on a sterling track record early and often in his career as a Tiger, forcing his way into the lineup as a freshman.
B/R college football columnist Tyler Donohue spent three seasons with the Rutgers University football program's recruiting department, contributing to three classes (2007-09) under head coach Greg Schiano.