One of the nation’s top-rated Defensive Ends in the 2025 recruiting class commits to LSU on Friday

LSU defensive ends coach Kevin Peoples

LSU is on a recruiting roll.

LSU defensive ends coach Kevin Peoples just added a giant complimentary piece, as Damien Shanklin committed to the Tigers as part of the 2025 class, LSU third major commitment in two days.

Shanklin, a highly sought-after recruit, has committed to LSU as a defensive end. ​ He is listed at 6-feet-4, 230 pounds and is considered the No. 5 EDGE on 247Sports and the No. ​ 48 prospect overall in America. ​

Shanklin had offers from top programs such as Alabama, Ohio State, Tennessee, and Notre Dame, but an unofficial visit to LSU for the spring game in April helped solidify his decision. He felt a strong connection with the coaches and players, and he loved the culture and support shown by the LSU community.

Shanklin’s familiarity with Peoples, who recruited him from the Midwest, played a significant role in his decision. ​ Shanklin is reported to have also appreciated the coaching style of coach Brian Kelly, who had experience coaching players from Shanklin’s high school. ​

According to scouting reports, Shanklin is highly regarded for his physical attributes, including his size, length, explosive first step, knee bend, and hip flexibility. ​ He is known for his strong hands, ability to disengage quickly, and pursuit of the football with great effort. ​ He has the potential to be a multi-year impact player at the Power Four level and a high NFL draft pick. ​

LSU’s recruiting class now has 15 commitments, including three in the last two days and five in the last two weeks.

What are Shanklin’s physical attributes as a defensive end?

According to the scouting report from 247Sports, Shanklin possesses the following physical attributes as a defensive end: ​

  1. Size: Shanklin is listed at 6-feet-4.5 inches, which is considered ideal for a modern defensive end. ​ This height provides him with the necessary length to disrupt passing lanes and make plays at the line of scrimmage.
  2. Weight: He weighs around 230 pounds, which is a good weight for a high school senior defensive end. ​ It indicates that he has a solid build and the potential to add more weight and strength as he continues to develop.
  3. Length: Shanklin has ideal length measurements, which is another important attribute for a defensive end. This allows him to effectively engage with offensive linemen, create separation, and disrupt plays.
  4. Explosive First Step: He exhibits an explosive first step off the line of scrimmage, which is crucial for a defensive end to quickly penetrate the offensive line and disrupt plays in the backfield. ​
  5. Knee Bend and Hip Flexibility: Shanklin demonstrates very promising knee bend and hip flexibility, which enables him to maintain leverage and change direction smoothly. ​ This allows him to effectively navigate around offensive linemen and make plays in pursuit of the ball carrier. ​
  6. Strong Hands: He plays with strong hands at the point of attack, allowing him to shed blocks and make tackles. ​ This ability to disengage quickly from blockers is essential for a defensive end to make plays in both the run and pass game. ​

Several factors influenced Damien Shanklin’s decision to commit to LSU:

  • Strong Connection with Coaches and Players: During his visit to LSU, Shanklin spent time with the coaches, including Peoples, and bonded with them. Shanklin also mentioned hanging out with current LSU players Bryce Underwood, DJ Pickett, and Jared Smith.
  • Love for the Culture and Support: Shanklin expressed his love for the culture at LSU and the amount of support he felt from the LSU community. This sense of belonging and the support shown to him during his visit made him feel comfortable and welcomed, contributing to his decision to commit to LSU.
  • Familiarity with Coach Kelly: Shanklin mentioned his familiarity with coach Kelly, who had experience coaching players from Shanklin’s high school. ​ He appreciated the way coach Kelly coached and the success he had with players from Shanklin’s school. ​ This familiarity and positive relationship with coach Kelly played a part in his decision. ​
  • Unofficial Visit and Separation from Other Programs: Shanklin’s unofficial visit to LSU for the spring game in April helped separate LSU from other programs. ​ He was able to see everything LSU had to offer, including the campus and facilities, and this visit made a strong impression on him. ​ It showcased what LSU had to offer and helped him see himself building a legacy at LSU, he said.

Feeling at Home: Shanklin consistently mentioned feeling at home during his visits to LSU. ​ This sense of comfort and belonging was a significant factor in his decision. Feeling at home likely includes factors such as the overall atmosphere, the relationships he built with coaches and players, and the support he received from the LSU community.

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Tiger Rag News Services

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