It’s rare to have a no-brainer pick for the top player in a class this early but there was no argument about Lebbeus “LT” Overton and where he should be slotted in the first Rivals100 for the 2023 class. The Milton, Ga., football and basketball star tops the initial class of 2023 Rivals100 and he’s ready for the challenges that lie ahead.
“Hearing that news (No. 1 player in the 2023 class) is a blessing, a blessing from God,” Overton said. “I’m totally humbled and honored. It’s big to me but I just want to maintain that position and make sure I keep working.”
RIVALS RANKINGS WEEK
Monday: Five-star countdown
Tuesday: Rivals100 revealed | Who is the top player at each position? | Gorney’s thoughts | Recruiting updates on offensive players in the ranking
Wednesday: Recruiting updates on defensive players in the ranking | States, positions producing the most 2023 talent
Thursday: Who is on the cusp of the Rivals100?
Friday: Rankings roundtable
There are currently five schools that have a leg up in Overton’s recruitment.
“I have the best connections with Texas A&M, Alabama, Clemson, and Ohio State,” he said. “They make sure they keep in contact with me. USC is starting to play a role too, building on our connections.”
Texas A&M: “Being born there, I was always an Aggie from the start,” said Overton. “Coach Jimbo is my guy too, coming from FSU. I met him at a FSU camp and with him now down at Texas A&M, he’s always kept in contact with me and my family.”
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Alabama: “As a youngin, I’ve always been around that coaching staff and football players,” he said. “I actually had the chance to meet Nick Saban and eat dinner with his family, his wife. Our connection is great. They’re making sure they keep in contact with me. That new coaching staff is making sure they get their recruiting done right.”
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Clemson: “They’re one of the schools I visited on a recruiting visit (before the pandemic),” Overton said. “Their campus is amazing. Their facilities, weight room, everything is just awesome. Being connected with those coaches, especially Todd Bates, is just a blessing. He’s always contacting me and it’s just awesome.”
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Ohio State: “Seeing Ohio State and the players they developed over they years like Chase Young, the Bosa brothers, you see them transferring to the NFL and it’s just like ‘wow’,” he said. “They make sure they get it done. It’s one of the top schools and programs in the country. They stay in contact and make sure they know what I’m looking for. It’s just awesome. Adding in the basketball offer, their basketball program is amazing too. I’m planning on visiting.”
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USC: “It’s really coach Vic over there,” said Overton. “He’s really down to earth and makes sure he’s contacting me. He keeps it one hundred with you. He’s starting to build a great relationship with my parents too and that the most important thing.”
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ALSO IN THE MIX …
The pandemic and extended recruiting dead period have made it impossible for prospects and their families to take traditional recruiting visits to schools for more than a year but, with the dead period slated to end at the end of May, Overton is excited to get a closer look at some of these schools. He has a few in mind in addition to the schools mentioned above.
“(Visits) are something I’m going to have to discuss with my parents,” he said. “We really haven’t decided that yet but there are definitely going to be some big time schools in the mix, especially some of the smaller schools that don’t get as much recognition. I’d love to travel the country and experience that recruiting process. I’ll probably visit Georgia. I’ll say Notre Dame too. Oregon too because I hear a lot about them.”
Georgia: “I haven’t quite been to Georgia yet,” Overton said. “They’re really close to me. I’m close with one of their training coaches, Scott Cochran. He’s always been down to earth and he’s close with my parents. Especially back at Alabama, they were always connected.
“They’re named the Georgia Bulldogs for a reason,” he said. “Every time I hear Georgia I just think of a dog. They’re just straight dogs on the field, especially with their size and athletic ability. I can see in them all that training they go through. Going through their Instagrams and Twitters, I can see the grind and I can see their potential.”
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Notre Dame: “One of my teammates, Jack Nickel, being committed to Notre Dame, he always makes sure he gets a word in about them,” said Overton. “It’s funny but it’s pretty cool. The coaches make sure they get in contact with me too. Being offer on St. Patrick’s Day, I was surprised. It was an amazing experience to get offered with a bunch of other 2023 guys. It feels great to know other people are getting looked at too.”
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Oregon: “The coaches haven’t really been in contact with me much but they are a school who I’d love to contact,” he said.
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FINAL THOUGHTS ….
To say Overton is from an athletic family is an understatement. Overton’s mother, Eunice, played volleyball at Kentucky before coaching at the collegiate level. Overton’s brother, Micaiah, is a redshirt freshman defensive tackle at Liberty. His father, Milton, is currently the athletic direction at Kennesaw State and has spent about 25 years in college athletics, with stops at Alabama, Texas A&M, TCU, and Florida A&M. He also played for Oklahoma in the early 1990s.
“Oklahoma is one of the online visits that I got to experience,” Overton said. “Their facilities are amazing. I’d love to go visit there. The coaches are down to earth. While my dad was down there, he had a close friend who was a good mentor to him and they’d have my back. They’re just a program I can trust.
“Being from an athletic family, it’s about the effort,” he said. “They make sure you’re on time and make sure you’re doing everything right, not just on the court or the field, especially in school and life in general. They make sure I’m at my best at all times. When I was younger getting trained by not only my coaches but also my brother, he’s always had my back and is still there for me and helping me train. My dad and mom are on me everyday to make sure I’m getting better at what I need to do to succeed at that next level.”
Not only is Overton a major football recruit, he has the skillset on the basketball court to earn dual-sport offers from teams like Ohio State, North Carolina, and Stanford.
“I get (called ‘Little Zion’) a lot actually,” said Overton. “Zion is just a beast in the paint and he’s working on his shooting, transitioning into that true 3. I get called that everyday at almost every basketball tournament I go to. I would love the chance to be able to play both sports and take that extra step.”
As a freshman, Overton recorded 19 sacks and more than 100 tackles. He followed that up with 21.5 sacks, 70 tackles, 26 quarterback hurries, and six forced fumbles as a sophomore.
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