LSU may have the No. 3 recruiting class in the country, but that doesn’t mean Will Wade is finished with the 2018 signing class yet.
Wade spent parts of last week talking with potential transfers, a recruiting market he hopes to tap into this season, as he did last.
“It’s one way to build your team and ensure you stay old,” Wade said of recruiting transfers. “You’re getting a little bit more of a known commodity. You at least have some idea of what they can do at some equitable level of competition.”
The Tigers have three signees and one commitment for the 2018 class. Five-star big Naz Reid and four-stars Javonte Smart, a combo-guard, and Darius Days, a combo-forward, signed with the program in the fall, and five-star forward Emmitt Williams is set to sign in April.
LSU graduates the scholarships of Duop Reath, Aaron Epps, Randy Onwuasor, and Jeremy Combs. Wade also has a scholarship available from the dismissal of Galen Alexander earlier this year and could have a second open if Mayan Kiir is not reinstated to the team. The first-year head coach has also shown a willingness to re-shape his roster, as he did last offseason when upperclassmen Jalyn Patterson and Elbert Robinson elected to part ways with the team.
Wade has already spoken about the need to sign a junior college player in this class – likely a stopper on the wing whose primary role will be to shut down the opposition’s best scorer and bring edge to the team.
“We’re going to add another defensive-minded junior college kid, or whoever we can find that’s got some toughness to him,” Wade said. “We gotta add one more guy who’s got some toughness to him.”
That’s not the only market for transfers. Wade also said he spent time Thursday talking with transfers who’d already been granted their releases, and he’s willing to take at least one, if not two, who would have to sit out a season, as he did with Kavell Bigby-Williams from Oregon this year. That player could very well be a big who sits and is ready to take the mantle if Reid is one-and-done, as is LSU’s plan for the New Jersey native.
“We’ll take definitely another (transfer) that’s going to sit out and maybe one that can play or one that can sit out,” Wade said.