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Commitment Analysis: Xavier Atkins to LSU

Xavier Atkins
Xavier Atkins (Xavier Atkins)

LSU landed its second commitment in the 2024 class on Tuesday afternoon as Jonesboro (La.) Hodge three-star outside linebacker Xavier Atkins made his pledge to the Tigers just one day after decommitting from Missouri.

The 6-foot-2, 200-pound defender earned an offer from LSU on June 27 after camping in Baton Rouge earlier in the month. His performance among a loaded group at LSU's Elite Camp was good enough to earn him the scholarship offer, and now the Tigers have their first in-state pledge in 2024.

An athletic linebacker in both the pass and run game, Atkins is a terrifying player to defend when he gets a head of steam. His film shows multiple plays of him flying downhill to make violent tackles in the backfield.

His patience in coverage is an above-average trait for his position group in the 2024 class as he knows when to sit in the second level while plays develop while also getting out and attacking the read when its made. His two interceptions last season, including one that was returned for a touchdown, show his ability to be a cover linebacker or a linebacker/safety hybrid at the next level, but his best projection is probably as a linebacker who bulks up and attacks the backfield.

An absolute statistical machine during his junior season, Atkins also recorded 218 tackles including a whopping 28 tackles for loss, eight sacks, two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. His production stands out as one of the more impressive defensive seasons in all of Louisiana in 2021 as he helped lead Jonesboro Hodge to a 2A state semifinal appearance.

While he is only halfway through his high school career, Atkins could use some more physical development before hitting the college game. An extra healthy 20-30 pounds could make him a dangerous threat as both a pass rusher and open field tackler in the SEC. If his athleticism can be retained with that, it would be easy to see Atkins carry his insane production over into the college game as well.

Atkins joins Alvin (Texas) Shadow Creek four-star safety Maurice Williams Jr. as the only commits in LSU's 2024 class.

At 6-foot-2, 200 pounds, Atkins is ranked as the No. 7 recruit in the state of Louisiana and the No. 28 outside linebacker in the country for the class of 2023, according to Rivals.