Jeremy Pruitt landed his biggest win on the recruiting trail Wednesday morning, as LSU general manager and director of football operations Austin Thomas accepted a job in the same role at Tennessee.
BREAKING: #Vols raiding SEC rival for key staff hire.
— Patrick Brown (@pbrown247) December 13, 2017
Per Ross Dellenger of The Advocate (Baton Rouge), LSU offered Thomas a contract boost to attempt to get him to stay. However, he strongly desired to return to his alma mater and couldn’t pass up the opportunity.
In his five years at LSU, Austin Thomas juggled many unofficial positions under the moniker of GM. Per Barton Simmons, the best way to describe what Thomas did for LSU in a given day was a combination of: “Director of Player Personnel, Position Coach, Recruiting Coordinator, Associate Athletic Director, Assistant to the Head Coach, Graduate Assistant and more”.
What he does best though, is recruit.
Thomas was instrumental in recruiting Tennessee native and 5-star defensive back JaCoby Stevens, along with Tennessee native and 4-star linebacker Jacob Phillips to LSU. As one of the lead recruiters for the Tigers, LSU enjoyed tremendous success on the trail:
LSU recruiting classes under Thomas:
2014 – 2nd
2015 – 5th
2016 – 2nd
2017 – 7th
— Barstool Rocky Top (@BarstoolTenn) December 13, 2017
As an alumnus of the University of Tennessee, Thomas was reportedly “dying” to come home. This will mean great things for Tennessee’s recruiting, especially in the mid-state. This is undoubtedly Jeremy Pruitt’s biggest win of the offseason thus far.