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Missed phone call cost LSU a four-star 2014 D-lineman?


It ofttimes amazes — and somewhat frightens — me how the mind of a teenager works.

Case in point: Breeland Speaks. The four-star defensive tackle, rated as the No. 12 strongside defensive end in the country in the Class of 2014, was down to LSU and Ole Miss as his finalists by January. By National Signing Day in early February, Speaks had opted to play his college football in Oxford for Hugh Freeze and the Rebels.

One of the deciding factors that pushed him to Ole Miss and away from LSU? Allow the player to explain, via the Jackson Clarion-Ledger:

“I was pretty close to going to LSU,” Speaks said. “Very close, very, very close. But, one thing led to another, one phone call was missed and now I’m an Ole Miss Rebel.”

Speaks has never been shy about LSU being his dream school, though an offer from the Tigers didn’t come until January, nearly three months after he had committed to the Rebels. After a Jan. 17 visit to Baton Rouge, Speaks weighed his two strongest scholarship offers with his parents and placed a call to Les Miles and his coaching staff that was never answered.

“One phone call,” Speaks reiterated. “That’s all it takes.”

OK then.

If you’re a college football coach, you just gotta love the vagaries of the recruiting trail… and a teenager’s thought process.

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16 Responses to “Missed phone call cost LSU a four-star 2014 D-lineman?”
  1. dbfan4ever says: May 30, 2014 11:11 AM

    Glad to see that these kids are taking their future seriously! Sadly, stupid things like this make a difference to these kids! That is why many college football teams change uniforms every year or so because it means something to these hs kids!

  2. mrlaloosh says: May 30, 2014 11:40 AM

    Wow! LSU lost out on this Mensa candidate? Consider yourself lucky, Les.

  3. Professor Fate says: May 30, 2014 11:42 AM

    Seems a little thin. Perhaps he just needed a reason to go one way or the other, but a missed phone call is stretching it.

    That said, this is the 21st century. The phone number you give out while representing a major university should always be answered, whether by you, an assistant, an answering service, whatever. Even if this kid didn’t leave a voicemail someone should have immediately called the number back. I thought college football was a business, but in some places maybe not a very well-run business.

  4. mt10425 says: May 30, 2014 1:53 PM

    Wanting someone’s business but not responding to phone communication is prevalent today. It’s an arrogance that is best dealt with by making choices to do business elsewhere, as this young man did. Good for him.

  5. cubano76 says: May 30, 2014 2:18 PM

    Les dodged a bullet on this one. That kid is class A knucklehead. BTW, I’ll bet that “A” I just wrote in the last sentence will be the only one that kid sees in a long…..LONG time.

  6. auburntigers34 says: May 30, 2014 2:26 PM

    It’s kinda hard to blame the kid for going where he felt like he was wanted. It sounds like he was nothing more than a backup plan for LSU.

  7. texasbornlsufan says: May 30, 2014 4:31 PM

    Probably didn’t answer on purpose with the haul in D Line they got at the end!!!!

  8. beastnola says: May 30, 2014 6:18 PM

    I don’t think Lsu lives up to its full potential in regards to recruiting and it shows. I don’t think this is the first time and probably won’t be the last 4 or 5 star they lose over a communication issue.

  9. cwilson6843 says: May 30, 2014 7:02 PM

    Some of you take football to serious. Talking down on a highschool kid… wow

  10. runninrebelfan says: May 30, 2014 8:52 PM

    I understand Breeland’s choice perfectly. My son was a college recruit and there were a number of programs and coaches who never returned a call or even showed the courtesy of responding to emails. All it takes is treating these high school athletes like you would like to be treated. Too bad LSU did not do that, in this case.

  11. bornahawker says: May 30, 2014 11:41 PM

    That was a call to the bank. The upfront cash did not hit so the old man called ole miss and the wire hit by the end of business day. Silly Rabbits!

  12. runbucs says: May 30, 2014 11:48 PM

    NCAA only allows so many phone conversations to recruits. Betcha LSU reached their limit during that period of time and couldn’t contact him again for awhile. Good job of avoiding recruiting violations, Les. Speaks may be really great, but he wont get as much hype at Ole Miss. More than half of LSU’s games are nationally televised. Plus, he wont have a great opportunity to win the national championship with the Rebels.

  13. sportsfan18 says: May 31, 2014 6:55 AM

    Sadly, it’s simply typical of more and more kids in this day and age…

    Things are about them, all the time…

    Kids today have so much, from phones early on, connected socially via so many different networks and they grow up differently.

    It was about this kid. This kid can’t comprehend at this point that not just coach Miles, but other coaches too are chasing lots of candidates and that the world doesn’t revolve solely around this kid.

    To this kid’s mind (and many other kids today as I’m not just try to pick on this one kid) the world does revolve around them.

    Coach Miles “dissed” him…

  14. ddweer says: May 31, 2014 8:36 PM

    First off its pretty cool to slam a high school kid….

    Secondly, pretty sure most of the disgruntled comments are coming from Bayou Bengal fans. I have meet Speaks and seen him play. He has the potential to be something special.

    As for the comment about exposure, chance to play in the NFL and playing for a national championship. Willis & Hardy got plenty of exposure and LSU is batting 50/50 vs Ole Miss, and barely pulled out that win at home, since Freeze came to Oxford.

    Lastly, picking up a phone call or responding to a missed call is pretty important in the business world. If I don’t answer my clients when they need me, I can definitely loose them to the competition.

  15. phinfanatic84 says: Jun 1, 2014 10:41 PM

    I hope you don’t have to spell in your business or you will “lose” every client. Fact of the matter is that nobody knows what day or time of the day that he called or if LSU had reached their qouta for contacting recruits. Les could have been spending time with his wife or kids, been at church or even been talking to another recruit like Travonte Valentine at the time. If they didn’t even offer him until January and signing day is less than a month later than I doubt they even really wanted the kid to be a Tiger. Hopefully, kids will start choosing schools based on the quality of the education and playing time that they will receive instead of whether or not a coach answers the phone when they call.

  16. florida727 says: Jun 2, 2014 4:30 PM

    Some of these kids have redefined the word ‘arrogant’. The first time he ends up flat on his back from being run over by an LSU lineman, he may reconsider his attitude. Keep telling him how great he is. Better yet, just ask him.

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