Baton Rouge native Darren Evans is latest LSU football graduate transfer signee

Nicholls cornerback and Baton Rouge native Darren Evans (24) is now an LSU Tiger,

What’s better than a homegrown Baton Rouge football talent getting a chance to play a game in Tiger Stadium as an opponent?

Try playing five games in Death Valley in an LSU uniform this season or more beyond that.

Nicholls and former Glen Oaks defensive back Darren Evans committed to LSU Tuesday night as a graduate transfer who has been granted immediate eligibility.

“It’s going to be different,” Evans told Rivals.com. “A feeling you can’t explain.”

Evans, who was lightly recruited out of high school, was set to a start for the Colonels in their Oct. 3 game at LSU this season. But the Southland Conference decided Aug. 13 to delay all of its fall sports to the spring because of the coronavirus pandemic. Then, the SEC said its members would play a 10-game conference games only schedule.

Evans entered the NCAA’s transfer portal on Sept. 4 and drew immediate interest from schools such as LSU, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Hawaii, Louisiana Tech and Memphis.

The 6-foot 3, 180-pound Evans, a 2 ½-year starter and a second-team All-Southland Conference selection in 2018, has enrolled at LSU and is expected to participate in Tigers’ practice this week.

He’ll play cornerback and nickel safety for an LSU secondary needing reliable, experienced depth after losing five DBs off last year’s national championship team.

The Tigers lost junior safety Grant Delpit and senior cornerback Kristian Fulton to the NFL Draft. Eric Monroe moved to Texas Tech as a graduate transfer and rising sophomore Marcel Brooks transferred to TCU where he has been granted eligibility. Finally, senior safety/nickelback Kary Vincent Jr. opted out of the 2020 season to concentrate on preparations for the 2021 NFL Draft.

LSU’s secondary features a talented, but youthful look with returning sophomores consensus preseason All-American Derek Stingley Jr., Cordale Flott and Jay Ward. Raydarious Jones is a redshirt freshman.

The Tigers added Elias Ricks and Dwight McGlothern, a pair of gifted true freshmen to the mix. They’ve helped to create a competitive preseason camp that until recently lacked enough healthy bodies because of a spate of hamstring injuries.

LSU’s biggest benefit from adding Evans is having a player with tremendous length and experience after being part of Nicholls’ FCS playoff teams the past two seasons.

Evans played in 14 games last year for Nicholls, making 47 tackles and two stops for loss. He was tied for fifth among FCS defensive backs with 15 pass break-ups and one interception.

He earned All-SLC honors two years ago with 55 tackles and two interceptions in 13 starts. His 2018 highlight came in a matchup with Northwestern State’s Jazz Ferguson, who later signed with the Seattle Seahawks as an undrafted free agent. He limited the SLC’s Offensive Player of the Year to two catches for 54 yards.

Evans took over as Nicholls’ starter five games into his redshirt freshman season and was credited with 20 tackles and an interception.

“They say Home is where the heart is,” Evans posted on Twitter.

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