Live Oak four-star defensive lineman Jalen Lee said his standing offer from LSU football coach Ed Orgeron on when he wanted to commit to the Tigers didn’t have a particular timetable.
Or a preferred time of the day.
Lee, the nation’s No. 337 overall prospect and state’s No. 13 prospect according to 247 Sports, continued a torrid trend for LSU when the 6-foot-4, 295-pounder became the third defensive lineman in three days to select the Tigers.
Becoming the 20th member of the LSU’s Class of 2020 meant Lee decided to call at 10:30 p.m. Tuesday to inform Oregon of his decision.
“Coach O always said I had a scholarship there,” Lee said in regard to the timing of his commitment, securing a spot in LSU’s Class of 2020 which only has five more positions available. “He always told me to call when I was ready.
“He was happy, he wasn’t expecting that,” Lee said. “He was screaming and hollering. I wanted to stay home, be a hometown hero for my state, help my state win a national championship. Just give back to my state.”
LSU has put together one of its largest hauls of defensive linemen in recent memory with Lee’s commitment, giving the Tigers a total of seven prospects that could play either nose guard, tackle or end.
Lee, a nose tackle at Live Oak, expects to play either tackle or end and continued a run of defensive linemen that recently committed to the Tigers, joining John Ehret’s Patrick Jenkins and Eric Taylor of Trussville, Ala.
LSU’s current recruiting class is rated third nationally by 247 Sports behind Clemson and Alabama.
“It feels good,” he said. “I’m going to do my part and help Coach O recruit some guys and get them down to ‘The Boot’.”
Lee’s commitment comes nearly six months after receiving a scholarship offer from Orgeron, beginning a process that’s included several unofficial visits to campus that’s helped develop a closer relationship with the school and coaching staff.
In the final analysis, those were key components that played a significant role in Lee choosing LSU over a group of nine other schools that he narrowed within the month – a list that included Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi State, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Tennessee, Texas and Texas A&M.
Lee said he hasn’t decided whether he’ll take additional visits or whether he’ll sign during the early signing period in December or wait until February. He previously scheduled his first official visit to Oklahoma on Aug. 31.
“It felt like home every time I went there, they treated me like family,” Lee said of LSU. “It’s unreal. It’s every kid’s dream that plays high school football in Louisiana to go to LSU. It’s surreal. Every school that I was considering all recruited me hard, but I just felt at home at LSU. My heart’s at LSU.”
Lee is a two-year letterman for Live Oak, earning first team All-District 4-5A and All-Parish honors in 2018. He finished the season with 74 tackles, nine quarterback hurries, eight tackles behind the line of scrimmage and 5 ½ quarterback sacks.
“I sat down with my family and talked about it with them,” Lee said. “They said wherever my heart’s at, just to follow my heart and my heart’s at LSU.”