Turner favored staying earlier in week, coach says; Collins, Hill “strongly considering” a return

LSU right guard Trai Turner, a draft-eligible sophomore, was favoring a return for his junior season when he last spoke to his former high school coach.

Trai Turner’s future is uncertain. (Travis Spradling | The Advocate)

David Johnson, Turner’s coach at St. Augustine High and now an assistant at Tulane, said Turner sounded as if he’d return to school during a conversation earlier this week.

“I felt like he was going to go back to school,” Johnson said Thursday. “He wasn’t sure. Was going to talk to his coaches.”

Turner was not one of the LSU draft-eligible players who was expected to make the early NFL leap, but Athletes’ Performance, a company that trains players for the NFL Combine, announced last week that Turner had joined its program.

Underclassmen have until Wednesday to declare for the draft.

Team spokesman Michael Bonnette did not know if Turner, or any other LSU players, had made a decision on the draft.

Left tackle La’el Collins and running back Jeremy Hill are “seriously considering” returning for next season, a source said Thursday. The Advocate reported earlier this week that Hill was leaning toward returning to school.

Just two LSU players have officially declared so far: defensive tackles Anthony Johnson and Ego Ferguson. Junior receivers Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham Jr. are expected to forgo their senior seasons for the draft, but have not yet made an announcement.


  1. What make a winning college football team? The choice of men that are determined not to lose. Working hard together to gain the grown in front of them, and to fiercely keep fighting for their collective goal.. Victory not at all cost – because college football is only a game and not war. But at a reasonable coast of time, and struggle.

    Trai Turner, La’el Collins, Jeremy Hill, would make the 2014 LSU tiger football team spirit much stronger. If they decide to play one more year in tiger Stadium before their friends, relatives, and tiger fans.

    Tiger stadium will rock once more in a very spectacle way.

  2. Young men thrust into television screens and limelight Saturdays maybe given a disservice.
    In not too many years, these same young men who are now coddled with academic help, free tuition, and free room & Board, will look back and wish to God they had focused on getting their degrees. Only a small portion of LSU football players have the fortune to play over 5 years in the NFL for large sums of money. A simple accident could end their careers overnight. Then, there you are, having lifted weights and bulked up to block for powerful running backs and you have a resume that befits an order entry clerk. It happens. Some say that a Duke University football scholarship is worth $200K per year. Not many of those players at Duke leave early for the NFL. They all play out through their senior years, get a Duke degree, get into the Duke alumni network, and make a fortune. Some even go to play in the NFL, but as I mentioned, it is a short career there for everyone. That said, my advice to ALL LSU football players is to get your free LSU degree first, then if you are fortunate to get into the NFL for a few years do that, but your life after the NFL supporting your family will be 10 times longer than your NFL career. And remember, NFL agents want a piece of your contract, after you are out of the NFL they will not be involved in your life. Collins, Turner, Johnson, Ferguson, and Hill should return to school and relish in what they have now. If the NFL does not work out, they will be sitting on the sidelines the rest of their lives. . . .