Five-star receiver Shelton Sampson Jr. has committed to LSU football, he announced at Baton Rouge Catholic High School Saturday.
Sampson is the No. 4 wide receiver and No. 33 player in the nation for the Class of 2023, according to the 247Sports Composite. Alabama, Florida State and Texas A&M were his other final schools.
“I’m from Baton Rouge, so the question was, ‘Why not?’ Sampson told reporters following her engagement. “Why not go to LSU? I like the authenticity of the coaching staff and I just feel like everything is going in the right direction.
“From the old coaching staff to the new coaching staff, I see a big difference and I feel like it’s going in the right direction.”
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After his engagement, Sampson said quarterbacks coach Joe Sloan, wide receivers coach Cortez Hankton, and scouting specialist Jordan Arcement were his top scouts.
Another factor in her decision was the #SheltonStays movement. In July, LSU fans, players and commitments tweeted the hashtag in support of Sampson’s move to LSU.
“It was crazy. When I first saw it I was shocked. I didn’t even have words,” Sampson said. “That definitely played a big role in my engagement, showing how much they really wanted me.”
Sampson is the 18th player to commit to LSU as of the Class of 2023. He is the third wide receiver to join the Tigers, joining top 40 Miami prospect Jalen Brown and three-star rookie Kyle Parker.
LSU has the No. 7 recruiting class in the nation and the No. 3 recruiting class in the SEC following Sampson’s hiring. Sampson is the highest-rated commitment in the LSU class.
“They had a bunch of guys already engaged, texting me and telling me this was my house,” Sampson said. “I mean, they definitely showed me love.”
Along with Sloan, Hankton and Arcement, Sampson also had the chance to speak with former LSU running back and current Kansas City Chiefs running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire during LSU’s spring game.
“We both went to Catholic, so he was just telling me that Catholic at LSU is nothing like that,” Sampson said.
Florida State was the closest school to draw Sampson away from the Tigers, as former Catholic coach Gabe Fertitta works as an offensive analyst for the Seminoles.
At Catholic last season, Sampson struggled with injuries but still had 40 catches for 932 yards and eight touchdowns as the Bears won the Division I state championship.
Koki Riley is a recruiting and high school sports reporter for The Daily Advertiser and USA TODAY Sports South Region. Email him at [email protected]