LSU has been the SEC’s biggest NFL factory over the last several years.
Over the last 10 drafts, LSU has had an SEC-leading 63 players selected, along with 14 first-round picks, with Odell Beckham being the latest first-rounder. The Tigers tied a school record with nine total players selected in this year’s draft, after setting the school record with nine last year. Seventeen total underclassmen have exited the program the last two years alone.
Before speaking to the Houston Touchdown Club, Les Miles briefly touched on losing so many guys to the NFL, particularly underclassmen.
“It’s becoming a phenomenon for us to have guys put themselves in position to be drafted in three years and out,” said Miles. “Not necessarily what I would like to see but it’s something we are dealing with.
“We played 15 true freshmen this year, the year before we played 15 true freshmen and we will probably play 15 true freshmen again this year based on the fact there is going to be some great opportunities for guys to come in and fit into the two deep and compete.”
Of course losing so many underclassmen isn’t what any coach wants to see, but LSU is always in position to minimize the damage and the turnover impact. LSU usually signs a top-five recruiting class every year, with plenty of star players in their backyard.
Of the 15 freshmen Miles is talking about, running back Leonard Fournette, receivers Malachi Dupree and Trey Quinn, quarterback Brandon Harris and linebacker Clifton Garrett should all see playing time.
The NFL Draft has wiped out LSU’s roster in back-to-back years, but the Tigers’ program is one of the few that can absorb such personnel losses.
Other Les Miles notes:
- Miles touched on the QBs. He said Anthony Jennings probably knows the offense better but Brandon Harris is as talented as anyone he has recruited at the position. He noted it will be interesting to watch the battle unfold.
- Miles said Zach Mettenberger was a seventh-round steal to the Titans. He said Mett’s mind is bright and his NFL arm is ready.
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