Given what has transpired for the LSU men’s basketball program over the past three days. Cedric Russell’s decision to decommit looks like another tough hit for the Tigers.
After Antonio Blakeney’s decision to test the NBA draft waters and assistant coach David Patrick’s move to TCU, an announcement like Russell’s typically isn’t seen as a good thing.
But the 6-foot-3 guard from Alexandria’s Peabody High, ranked as the No. 5 combo guard in the nation in the class of 2017, doesn’t see it that way. Russell, who committed to the Tigers in the fall of his sophomore year, said he informed LSU coach Johnny Jones of his decision over the weekend.
“LSU is in my top five and is a school I’m still very interested in,” Russell said. “I know what they have to offer, and it’s all good. But the thing is, you only have the chance to get recruited like this once. I just want to see what some of the other options are for me.”
Russell averaged 23 points and 5.7 rebounds while helping lead top-seeded Peabody to the Class 3A semifinals. He made 52 percent of his shots from the field, including 49 percent of 3-pointers.
Most recruiting experts view Russell as a combo guard who could play the point guard or shooting guard role in college. Russell said Houston, Arizona State, Baylor and UCLA are among the other schools expressing an interest in him.
When asked what factor would decide where he signs, Russell didn’t hesitate.
“It’ll be the school and the program where I believe I fit in the best,” Russell said. “I want to go where I can play and I’m needed, not just to a school that wants me.”