In Tom Lemming's words, Joe McKnight is the most celebrated player to come out of New Orleans in the past 10 years and proved to be a high school version of Reggie Bush.
A cat-quick back affected by Hurricane Katrina, McKnight has persevered and readied himself to make a splash. However, even with signing day approaching, he's still very early in the process of making a decision. Lemming says he's got a couple of schools in mind primarily, but plans on making his visits before he makes the phone call.
LSU, USC, Florida, Florida State and Arkansas are players, with Alabama jumping in the mix after hiring Nick Saban. He grew up in-state during Saban's previous run at LSU.
McKnight runs a 4.3 40-time and is utilized all over the field at River Ridge (La.) John Curtis. He rushed for a three-yard touchdown and several highlight cut-backs in his high school finale as an All-American in San Antonio and got the "athlete" nod in Lemming's All-American selections.
As a junior, he carried the ball 36 times for 500 yards and nine TDs, averaging 13.9 yards per carry. This season, McKnight carried the ball 45 times for 709 yards and 14 TDs. He caught 24 passes for 735 yards. He finished with 30 TDs total, averaging 22.2 yards every time he touched the ball, and is also considered the area's most effective punt and kickoff returner, taking a combined 11 back for scores.
Outside of football, he's been timed in track with a 10.4 100 meters and long-jumps 23 feet and 11 inches.
He shows a rare combination of size, balance, quickness and vision. His ability to make cuts at a high speed is what makes him different from the other top offensive stars. He proved to be a naturally instinctive ball player who scared the 2006 defenses to death once he hit the open field. A premier athlete who could play RB, WR, DB and kick returner - he's a game-breaker with super vision.