LSU Football: Tigers have a solid 2023 QB option if they don’t land Arch Manning

Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports /

Five-star quarterback Arch Manning will likely be LSU football‘s top recruiting target during the 2023 cycle.

The Tigers, however, won’t be alone in their pursuit of Manning.

Nearly every top program in the country is hoping to land a commitment from the New Orleans native. Manning has all the tools to be a great college quarterback. And he has a bloodline that screams football royalty (his uncles are Peyton and Eli Manning).

LSU should be very much in the mix to land Manning — the Tigers are the hometown program.

But LSU is far from the favorite here. In fact, there are no favorites yet. Manning is being very deliberate about the recruiting process. He’s taking his time and gathering all the information before he makes his eventual decision.

LSU football has a backup option in case the program doesn’t land Arch Manning

If Manning decides he wants to leave Louisiana to play college football, it won’t be the end of the world for the Tigers.

For starters, LSU has plenty of quarterback talent on the roster. Garrett Nussmeier will be a true freshman in 2021. Walker Howard is a 2022 five-star quarterback from Lafayette who committed to the Tigers last summer.

LSU’s clearly in good shape there.

The Tigers also have another 2023 quarterback on their radar they could pursue if they don’t land Manning.

Rickie Collins, a Baton Rouge native who hasn’t been rated yet by the major recruiting services, has been receiving some attention from LSU over the last several months.

Collins doesn’t have an offer yet from LSU, but he has received offers from Arkansas, Memphis, Purdue, and Virginia Tech.

The pro-style quarterback has recently been talking with Tigers offensive coordinator Jake Peetz.

“We’re building a relationship; a relationship that they can be confident in me and get to know me as a player,” said Collins this week to Rivals. “It’s really been talking over the phone and watching film. He says he likes me and what I do and how I play.”

Collins may not be the same level recruit as Manning, but he’s still an interesting prospect that could be a good fit in the SEC. Collins is also a high school pitcher for the Woodlawn baseball team. Baseball players turned quarterbacks is a trend that’s been fruitful for NFL teams over the last several years (Russell Wilson, Patrick Mahomes, Kyler Murray, etc).

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There’s no doubt that LSU’s attention is on Arch Manning, but Rickie Collins is a player that could certainly fit in well with the Tigers.