LAFAYETTE , La. — Just because LSU has a top three basketball recruiting class doesn’t mean that head coach Johnny Jones can be a little greedy.
Jones said that he may not be finished with recruiting the 2015 class, saying that he is still looking for another player to add.
“We certainly have one scholarship that’s still available and we look forward to sitting out there, looking as who is going to be the best person that can be available that can make an impact,” Jones said.
But Jones did say that there is no timetable for that last scholarship and even said that he could hold that scholarship to next season or even bring in a transfer.
Jones has already chalked up a class that is No. 3 in the nation, according to 247 Sports. The recent signing of Mr. Louisiana guard Brandon Sampson is almost lagniappe when LSU already had Ben Simmons, the nation’s top-ranked recruit, in the fold along with forward Antonio Blakeney, a McDonald’s All-American like Simmons.
“You look at the guard play in terms of Antonio Blakely and Brandon Sampson, and then you certainly add what Ben Simmons will add with being able to play all five positions,” Jones said. “I think it gives us added incentives in terms of the flexibility of our team.”
The excitement of LSU getting so many top recruits for its basketball team in one year harkens back to 1992 when the Tigers had the top point guard in the country in Randy Livingston and the top shooting guard in Ronnie Henderson.
But Jones knows that the enthusiasm can be quickly erased if the new players cannot gel with the returning Tigers like junior guard TimQuarterman and senior guard Keith Hornsby.
“We feel that what we need to have now is great stability when you have the top recruiting class,” Jones said. “If we can bond well, chemistry’s right with the returning guys, some special things can happen for us, and that’s the mission that we’re on.”
The Tigers went 22-11 this past season and a top-four finish in the SEC, but a last-second loss to North Carolina State in the NCAA tournament put a mild damper on an impressive season. Jones hopes that the new class can keep the momentum that NBA-bound players like Jordan Mickey and Jarell Martin started this season.
“We’re going to miss two good players in Jordan Mickey and Jarell Martin,” Jones said. “We’re excited about the returning guys on our basketball team and we feel like we did a tremendous job in terms of recruiting guys that can fill that void with those two stars leaving.
“And anytime you have a top recruiting class, I think it speaks volumes for what those guys have done, how they represent their schools and the impact they’ve made to make us attractive enough to have that type of squad coming in.”