The past spring and summer has been a whirlwind of activity on the recruiting front for Jonesboro-Hodge star linebacker Xavier Atkins. Seemingly every week there has been an offer to visit a universtiy or even better sign a scholarship. Not from small schools mind you. Sure Grambling and Lousiana Tech put their hat in the ring but when the heavy’s like Oklahoma State, Tennessee and Missouri came calling to offer full rides the bar got lifted tremendously.
Early on it looked as the University of Missouri had the inside track, even to the point the state’s leader in tackles and solo stops last year committed to go there. The reasoning was that Atlkins had a relationship with Miizzou linebacker coach Blake Baker, who met on a visit to LSU last fall while Baker was on Ed Orgeron’s staffl.
Anyone associated with Atkins knew all along that there was one offer above all that he wanted. On Tuesday, July 5th he got the call he had always dreamed about. LSU linebacker coach Matt House was on the other end to let him know that LSU was officially making an offer for Atkins to play football for the Fighting Tigers. His reply took all of about three seconds.The official response is that as of July 5th, 2022, Xavier Atkins is committed to play football for Louisiana State University.
It was not a secret that LSU was going to offer as after Atkins did so well at the LSU camp a few weeks back, the LSU coaching staff had been in almost daily contact. When Atkins officially de-committed from Missouri on the 4th of July it was taken for granted that Atkins was on his way to staying a Tiger.
“This was the one I wanted all along” said Atkins. “This is the one I always dreamed of getting and I thank God for making it happen.
For Atkins though playing for LSU means more than football.
“My best friend (Lajavion Nichols) had always dreamed of playing at LSU before he died in a car wreck last year,” reflected Atkins. “He was good enough to do it too and we used to talk about being there together all the time. We are still going to be there together as it is honoring him that motivates me to be the best I can be.”