There was plenty of suspense leading up to where Oakland High (Murfreesboro, Tenn.) senior football standout JaCoby Stevens was going to play college football.
Not with Stevens or his family, that is.
“I’ve known that’s where I’ve wanted to go since I took a spring visit there,” said Stevens, who committed to LSU on Monday afternoon in an announcement in Oakland High’s gymnasium in front of students, teammates, family and friends.
“Everything about (LSU) felt like home. It was a perfect pick for me. My family and my girlfriend knew.”
Stevens originally committed to LSU last September, but pulled out in November when Tigers coach Les Miles’ job security became an issue.
In April, Stevens announced Georgia was his No. 1. Alabama also entered the mix and in June he narrowed his final four choices to LSU, Georgia, Alabama and Auburn.
Stevens, the Midstate’s top prospect and No. 2 in the state, according to 247Sports, is also ranked as the nation’s No. 2 safety prospect.
In 2015, Stevens had 84 tackles and six interceptions on defense while hauling in 32 passes for more than 800 yards and 11 TDs as a wide receiver on offense.
With strong family ties in Louisiana, the decision to go with a team he grew up cheering for was a huge factor for Stevens.
“He’s been in love with them since he was 4 years old,” said JaCoby’s father, Jeremy Stevens. “He has spent a lot of time on campus. Every time we would go there, he would have to go make a visit to Mike the Tiger.”
LSU went 9-3 a season ago and is currently ranked No. 4 in 2017 recruiting class, according to 247Sports. Before Stevens’ announcement the Tigers had garnered 18 commitments (11 in the top 300, according to ESPN).
The Oakland senior displayed a good poker face during the two weeks since setting the date for his announcement. He was seen in a Georgia jersey at a recent Patriots’ practice.
“I didn’t know (a local reporter) was going to be out there,” joked JaCoby, who also retweeted items from Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi State and LSU on Monday. “I retweeted the Mississippi State thing because my boy Kaleb (Oliver) is going there.”
Added Jeremy Stevens, “I told him to have fun with it. He was a little on edge at times (during the process), but we told him it was supposed to be fun.”