Twenty-four hours. That’s all it took for Duke Riley to switch sidelines for the Cowboys Classic.
A day after Riley committed to TCU, the John Curtis linebacker switched his pledge to LSU after the Tigers finally came through Wednesday with a full scholarship offer.
Riley expressed his delight in a telling Twitter message that threatened to exceed the 140-character limit for all the exclamation points.
“Just Committed to LSU on a Full Scholarship!!!!!” Riley tweeted Wednesday night. “Ill be their (sic) in June!!!!”
The 6-foot-1, 205-pound Riley gives LSU 27 commitments for its 2013 class plus early signee Logan Stokes, the tight end from Northeast Mississippi Community College who enrolled earlier this month.
Riley’s pledge gives some much-desired momentum to a consensus top 10-ranked LSU recruiting class that has seen several offers of late get spurned by the Tigers’ targets.
Lauderdale Lakes (Fla.) Boyd Anderson wide receiver Eddie Jackson (6-1, 178) committed to Alabama over LSU and Florida State on Wednesday after taking his official visit to Baton Rouge last weekend.
Meanwhile, the commitment of Denham Springs lineman Tevin Lawson (6-4, 275) is in limbo after his coach said LSU asked the Yellow Jackets’ star to take a grayshirt.
Riley’s recruiting process ran exactly the opposite way. LSU dangled only a grayshirt for months, but Wednesday the Tigers passed a new offer across the table and Riley snapped it up.
Riley is a four-star prospect according to ESPN and gets three stars from Rivals, Scout and 24/7 Sports. ESPN ranks him as the No. 17 prospect in Louisiana, while 24/7 Sports ranks him No. 23 and Rivals ranks him No. 28.
Lawson, No. 152 on the ESPN 300 as an offensive guard, was asked Monday by LSU to take a grayshirt, according to Denham Springs coach Dru Nettles.
“It’s a whirlwind so far,” Nettles said. “The family decided Monday afternoon to explore some options.”
Nettles said Lawson is considering a visit this weekend to Louisiana-Lafayette. Louisiana Tech, McNeese State, Southeastern Louisiana, Southern Mississippi, North Carolina, South Alabama, and Western Kentucky are among the schools that have also expressed interest, Nettles said.
The reason for LSU’s sudden hesitancy to take Lawson is the school’s concern over a summer class he took at Denham, Nettles said. Nettles said Lawson made a “D” in the class in question last year, made a “B” over the summer and is now taking the class for a third time.
“I’m 95 percent certain he will be eligible,” Nettles said, “almost 100 percent. There’s no reason to think it’s not (going to count). But they (LSU) thought it might. That’s on them. They know which classes we have him in.”
Nettles said he thinks there’s only a 50-50 chance Lawson will sign with anyone when the national signing period begins next Wednesday.
“He may take two or three visits to make sure he can choose between some of them,” Nettles said. “He can only make one visit before signing day.”
LSU continues its pursuit of the nation’s consensus No. 1 prospect, defensive end Robert Nkemdiche (6-5, 265) of Loganville (Ga.) Grayson, hoping he will follow through on plans to take his final official visit to Baton Rouge this weekend.
However, recruiting analyst Shea Dixon of 24/7 Sports said that as of Wednesday afternoon Nkemdiche had yet to firm up plans for his visit.
Nkemdiche is widely expected to sign with Ole Miss, where his brother Denzel plays linebacker.