LSU’s best recruiting gems in the Les Miles era

Les Miles has a reputation as a great recruiter, with his Tigers annually involved for the best recruiting class not only in the SEC but the entire nation. 

But recruiting rankings are based mainly on the high profile players signed by a school and rarely account for the developmental prospects brought into a program. NOLA.com recently published a column ranking the top eight finds of the Les Miles era. 

8) Alfred Blue was ranked as a three-star running back out of Louisiana in 2010 and the 60th running back in the nation his senior year of high school. Blue accounted for over 1,300 total yards and 11 touchdowns in his Tiger career before making the Houston Texans' roster in 2014.

7) Jerald Hawkins was another three-star prospect, ranked the 42nd tackle in the 2012 recruiting class. Hawkins has played both offense and defense in his Tiger career before settling at right tackle. Hawkins had to be convinced to come back for his junior season, if he continues his progression, he could be a top 2016 NFL Draft pick.

6) Tre'Davious White entered LSU as a five-star recruit, but Miles and the Tigers were on him before he received any recruiting hype or invitations to prestigious recruiting camps. Expect White to lock down a starting corner spot this fall.

5) Terrence Magee left high school as a three-star athlete coming to the Tigers in the same class as more regarded Jeremy Hill and Kenny Hilliard. Magee would make his mark however, as he was team captain in 2014 and looks to be drafted in the 2015 NFL Draft.

4) Brad Wing had three offers coming out of high school: LSU, McNeese State and Northwestern State. I think he made the right choice. The Aussie became a fan favorite after his booming kicks routinely flipped field position for the Tigers.

3) Bennie Logan came to the Tigers with virtually no fan fare and left school early for the NFL and was selected by the Philadelphia Eagles in the third round of the 2013 draft. 

2) Morris Claiborne was rated the 58th best corner coming out of high school in 2009 and played just as well as five-star Patrick Peterson in his college career. Claiborne would ultimately be selected sixth by the Dallas Cowboys in the 2012 NFL Draft.

1) Tyrann Mathieu while only having played two seasons in Baton Rogue, Mathieu ranks among the best defenders in the history of the program. Had he not had so much trouble off the field, he very well could have won the Heisman Trophy in 2012.

(h/t NOLA)