The LSU Tigers are putting together one of the nation’s best recruiting classes for the Class of 2015. On Monday, their highly-regarded class got even better.
Brandon Sampson, who had previously committed to the St. John’s Red Storm, has changed his mind and will stay home to play for LSU. Sampson backed off of his commitment to St. John’s after Steve Lavin was let go as the Red Storm’s head coach.
Sampson, a 6-4 shooting guard from Madison Prep in Baton Rouge, joins a talented class that will play for head coach Johnny Jones next season. The nation’s top recruit, 6-9 forward Ben Simmons, as well as the nation’s 14th-ranked player, guard Antonio Blakeney, had already committed to the Tigers. Adding Sampson, the 41st-best player in the class, gives Jones and his team a talented trio.
LSU now has the nation’s second-best recruiting class, according to Rivals.com. LSU jumped its SEC rival, the Kentucky Wildcats, with Sampson’s commitment. Only the Arizona Wildcats have a better 2015 class, according to Rivals.
The Tigers will have plenty of players in the backcourt, with Blakeney and Sampson joining returning guards Josh Gray, Keith Hornsby and Tim Quarterman. Simmons will anchor the frontcourt, but he will need some help on the inside with the departures of Jarell Martin and Jordan Mickey, who both declared for the NBA Draft. Arizona transfer Craig Victor will definitely help in that role.
Jones will have the players, now he must prove that he can win with them. One of the knocks on Jones is that he’s not a great bench coach. Much will be expected of this team next season, and Jones hopes that he can finally win an NCAA Tournament game next season. With this level of talent, LSU should be playing on the second week of the 2016 Big Dance.