4-star recruit Kenny Young will be a stud at the college level. The question remains if it will be at LSU.
Young is one of the best prep linebackers in the country. He played alongside 5-star receiver prospect Malachi Dupre at John Curtis High School in New Orleans, which has won three state championships.
Young, like Dupre, is currently uncommitted. The 247Sports.com crystal ball projection has LSU as a favorite to land each player, with Dupre being the likelier of the two to join the Tigers.
Linebackers must be versatile now offenses are so complex. Young certainly fits that mold. He can play outside or inside linebacker and makes plays in a variety of ways.
Young would boost the overall talent of the linebacker corps—something LSU desperately needs.
LSU's linebackers were average in 2013. Senior Lamin Barrow was the best of the bunch, but his 195 tackles over the past two seasons will need to be replaced.
The Tigers do have starters D.J. Welter and Kwon Alexander coming back. Welter and Alexander were inconsistent, but both progressed over the course of the year.
Backups Deion Jones and Lamar Louis will return after showing some flashes of brilliance in 2013.
I will report to LSU on June 6th and I will be wearing #3 for the LSU Tigers #GeauxTigers— Clifton Garrett CG3 (@CG340) January 23, 2014
Garrett is a massive addition to the Tigers defense. However, an argument could be made that Young is as good, if not better than Garrett.
Garrett and Young have similar film. They both show high football IQ and sideline-to-sideline range against the run and pass.
With that said, Young was exceptional playing in New Orleans, arguably the best hotbed of high school talent in the country. According to NOLA.com, he faced St. Augustine and the nation's No. 1 prospect, Leonard Fournette, on national television and raked in over 25 tackles.
Young was also the most dominant defender at the U.S. Army All-American Game, finishing the outing with six tackles and a sack. He plays his best against the best.
The transition in talent at the college level will be bigger for Garrett. He played his high school ball in Illinois, which is a step down from Louisiana. He was the best athlete on the field by a wide margin in nearly every game he played.
Garrett accumulated an impressive 139 tackles over 10 games this season. Nevertheless, MaxPreps.com indicates that his team gave up 34 or more points in five games.
Losing Young would not be a devastating blow. LSU, with Garrett included, has some young talent at the position. The Tigers also have a commitment from 3-star linebacker Donnie Alexander, who, like Young, is undervalued.
Who will finish as the better college player?
However, Young will be a star that could certainly help LSU. He is a more explosive version of former Tigers linebacker and Butkus Award finalist Darry Beckwith.
It is important to not get caught up in recruiting ratings. Not many players get 5-star grades, which makes Garrett an elite prospect. Young has immense talent too and could easily finish as the best linebacker in the 2014 class.
It is far too early to tell who will finish as the better college player between Young and Garrett, as a difference in one star now means absolutely nothing later.
Les Miles would not mind if Young ends up a better player than Garrett. But that's only if Young signs with LSU in early February.
Recruit ratings courtesy of 247Sports.com.
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