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Ten important LSU recruits that did not pan out for Orgeron

Arik Gilbert
Arik Gilbert (Rivals.com)

As the saying goes, games are won by Jimmys and Joes, not X's and O's. LSU has had no shortage of talent over the years and produced plenty of NFL Draft picks but there have been a lot of highly rated recruits that did not play to their potential.Signing recruits that routinely don't pan out can kill a college coach's career. Here's a look at 10 prospects that were signed by Ed Orgeron at LSU that did not pan out.

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Brennan hit the ground running when he arrived at LSU. He played in seven games his first two years on campus and saw time in 10 games as a reserve during LSU's championship 2019 season. Brennan started LSU's 2020 season as a starter and got through three games before suffering a season ending injury. Bad luck struck again this year when Brennan broke his arm days before the team's fall camp was scheduled to begin.

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A big, rangy linebacker out of high school, Brooks could have picked any school in the country to sign with. He chose LSU and had some big contributions to the Tigers' national title team. He was in line to become a starter in 2020 but wanted to leave to be closer to home. Brooks ended up transferring to TCU where he played mostly special teams in 2020 and is now a receiver.

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A highly rated defensive lineman as a recruit, Cherry had hoped to carry on LSU's tradition of producing outstanding defensive linemen. He arrived at LSU before the 2018 season and has only played in a total of 10 games so far. Cherry's career certainly hasn't panned out as expected. He's been credited with just five tackles and one sack in his career.

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This fall was supposed to be huge for Emery. He was in line to be the featured back and carry the load for the LSU this season but his opportunity to be in the spotlight never came to fruition. Emery has been caught up in academic eligibility issues that have kept him off the team, squandering any hope for a productive junior campaign. He played in 19 games so far at LSU, gaining 566 yards on the ground and scoring seven touchdowns.

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LSU was Gilbert's surprise choice as a high school recruit and had a solid freshman season with 35 catches and two touchdowns but the former five-star's career derailed shortly thereafter. Gilbert was the highest ranked tight end of all time as a recruit and it's really surprising he hasn't been able to stay on the field consistently. The drama of where he'd end up as a transfer prospect was a national storyline. Florida, Tennessee, and even a return to LSU were possibilities but he landed at Georgia and hasn't gotten on the field yet this season.

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Joseph was an important recruit for LSU and was a heavy contributor for the Tigers during the 2018 season. After a suspension for LSU's bowl game that season and getting passed by Derek Stingley Jr. on the depth chart, Joseph decided to transfer. He landed at Kentucky where he developed into a second round draft pick. Joseph played one season at Kentucky and then left for the NFL.

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A top 20 prospect in the 2019 class, Palmer arrived at LSU with high expectations. So far, Palmer hasn't come close to meeting those expectations. He's played in 23 games as a Tiger but only has 24 catches for 257 yards and just two touchdowns. The changes on the coaching staff and uneven play at the quarterback position could have contributed to Palmer's lack of production but he hasn't shown much promise in his three years in Baton Rouge.

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LSU had high hopes for Parker when he arrived in Baton Rouge but his career barely got off the ground before he got himself suspended and in legal trouble. He redshirted his first year at LSU and was arrested on felony charges in September of 2020. LSU suspended him indefinitely and he was never reinstated.

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After redshirting his first season, Rosenthal started three games during LSU's national title season and five the next season before transferring to Kentucky. With the Wildcats, Rosenthal has become a cornerstone of their offensive line, one of the best units in the nation. LSU has struggled with consistency along the offensive line this season, highlighting their mismanagement of Rosenthal when he was on the roster.

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Thomas was a big, strong, quick offensive lineman that ended the recruiting process as a five-star. He hasn't meshed with the other offensive linemen and hasn't seen much time on the field. Remaining healthy has also been an issue for Thomas. After redshirting his first year at LSU, he's been buried on the depth chart. Thomas played in one game as a redshirt freshman and three so far this season. Even with all the injuries LSU has had this season, Thomas has still had a hard time finding playing time.