RECRUITING: Rivals Now, Friends Later
LSU commitments Carneal Ainsworth and Kenny Bell set to lock horns Friday night in Class 3A playoffs
by Daniel Mingea III
Tiger Rag Recruiting Analyst
One of the neat components in high school recruiting is players often times meet up with an opponent that will one day be their teammate in college.
That is the case with Parkview Baptist High School product Carneal Ainsworth (6′4, 300) and Rayville star Kenny Bell (6′1, 170, 4.4) as their respective squads will be squaring off this Friday night in the second round of the playoffs.
Ainsworth claimed to be aware of who Bell was, but said the two of them have never met.
“I’ve never met Kenny in person before, but I have seen him on film,” Ainsworth stated. “From looking at his number he looks like he’s a great player. Hopefully I’ll beat him this one time and then we could still be friends at LSU.”
Although the 3-star lineman has never officially met the 4-star receiver, he has met many of his other future teammates as plenty of them were on hand for the Alabama game two weeks ago.
“It seemed like everybody was at the Alabama game,” Ainsworth claimed. “I met Stavion Lowe for the first time. I also talked with Josh Williford, Chris Faulk and Chris Davenport, but I’ve been knowing those guys for a while. It was good to see everybody.
“We talked about football for a little bit, but we were just hanging around watching the game,” Ainsworth continued. “Xavier Su’a Filo was also there. Josh and Chris were trying their best to get him to join us at LSU. I think he really liked LSU and it should come down to us and USC. I thought he was a really nice guy.”
Ainsworth made it to the Troy game as well and was also one of the few fans that stuck out for the entire game.
“I thought both games (Alabama and Troy) were fun,” Ainsworth admitted. “We came out on the unlucky end to Alabama and lost, but I thought the team played good. In the Troy game it seemed like Alabama almost beat us two weeks in a row because in the first half I think most of the team (LSU) came out still thinking about the loss to Alabama. But in the second half LSU came out and took care of business. A W is a W no matter how you look at it.
“I think things have been tough of the players after what happened to them earlier in the season,” Ainsworth added. “In the Florida game there were some plays that could have changed the game if they would have gone our way and then the first pass in the Georgia game was an interception.
“Those were just some unlucky breaks. And then when you come that close to beating the number-one team in the nation (Alabama), as a player, I could see how you would still be thinking about that a little bit.”