SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — LSU defensive coordinator Dave Aranda laughed when asked how much he would like to have had freshman cornerback Derek Stingley for the Fiesta Bowl, especially considering how thin the Tigers are in the secondary.
“That would be a great Christmas gift right there,” he said.
Stingley, rated the nation’s No. 1 overall prospect, signed with LSU in December and graduated from The Dunham School early. He passed up a chance to play in the prestigious All-American Bowl to participate in the Tigers’ last few bowl practices before the team left to come here.
During that short time, though, Stingley made quite an impression.
“He’s looks like the best guy we’ve got,” said Aranda, who said Stingley was his first early enrollee to participate in a bowl practice. “In the practices we had I think he had three picks.
“What I appreciate about Derek is his approach to it. He’s going to come in smiling, ‘Yes, sir,’ ‘No, sir.’ He’s a great story right there. Before it’s all over he’s going to be something.”