Curtis Johnson doesn’t feel the need to venture far from home to find talent.
The Tulane football coach added another dose of local flavor to his 2015 recruiting class Monday with the commitment of West Jefferson’s Louis Wings. He is Tulane’s ninth commitment, all of whom reside in South Louisiana stretching from New Iberia to New Orleans.
The 6-foot-1, 275-pound defensive tackle said he chose the Green Wave despite interest from Louisiana-Lafayette, Louisiana-Monroe, Western Kentucky, Louisiana Tech and Southern Miss. He’s rated a three-star prospect by Rivals.com.
“I want to enjoy this moment with my family,” Wings said via text message. “This is a very big moment in our lives.”
Wings said his recruitment was led by Green Wave receivers coach Keith Williams, who was one of the first coaches to target the interior lineman.
“Wings is strong enough to press the pocket, and he occupies double teams well to free up his linebackers to make plays,” 24/7sports.com analyst Sonny Shipp said. “He doesn’t shed blocks as well as you would like to see, but he shows some quickness in getting into the backfield and in backside pursuit.”
Wings is projected as a three-technique tackle at the college level. West Jeff defensive coordinator Dartanian Miller said he credits Tulane’s scouting and engagement in the community for finding the prospect before his recruitment ratchets up this summer.
“I remember before CJ got there, it seemed like they had more kids from New York than they did from down here,” Miller said. “It’s early in the summer, and I know (Wings) is going to have a lot of offers coming in pretty soon. CJ does a really good job of predicting what’s going to happen, and we’ve had other kids like Parry Nickerson who CJ offered first and that’s why he turned down offers from Cincinnati, TCU and other places.
“I think you’ll see something like that again. Louis is too powerful and too mature for coaches to stay away for long. But Tulane came in first, and that means something to him.”