Madison Nickens commits to LSU-Eunice

Kyle Riviere

St. Amant outfielder Madison Nickens will continue his playing career on the next level as he has verbally committed to LSU-Eunice.

The Gators' first-team all-district and first-team All-Metro performer from a year ago is looking forward to the opportunity that awaits.

"I thought it was the best option," Nickens said. "I can go there for two years and play and then move on to a Division-I program, so I just thought it was a really good opportunity for me."

Nickens excelled last year in his junior season--batting .356 with 10 doubles, 35 runs and 22 RBIs.

He helped lead the Gators to a first-round appearance in the playoffs where they lost a tight one to Denham Springs.

It was a very tough year for Nickens and St. Amant. Long-time head coach Bob Lemons---who won four state titles at the school--resigned in the middle of the season. Assistant coach and now current head coach Troy Templet had to take over.

Even with the turmoil, Nickens and the Gators were able to right the ship.

"We struggled for a little while but after everything settled down, we were able to just focus on baseball, and we went 10-5 in the district and had a really good year," Nickens said.

With the year under his belt, Nickens was able to take part in the Under Armor Preseason All-American Tournament over the summer, and he left quite an impression. While there, Nickens posted the fourth-fastest 60-yard dash time at 6.76.

And with 325 high school players competing from around the country, he made Under Armor's Top 20 2013 Grads Honorable Mentions.

On The Baseball Factory's website, they said of Nickens, "He is a burner that we have seen as fast as a 6.56 in the 60. He is a lean young centerfielder with a sound LH stroke. As he matures physically, he will become a special player."

Nickens humbly attributes much of what makes him a special player to his coaches.

"God gave me good height, good speed and good framework, and I've had great coaching over the years," Nickens said. "I had the raw talent, and I think the coaching did the rest."

With the talent and coaching, Nickens is expecting big things this spring for his senior season as a Gator.

"I'm really looking forward to it," Nickens said. "I have a feeling that we have a good opportunity to make some noise in the playoffs. I'm playing football right now, but it's still hard not to look ahead and get excited about the upcoming season. I'm just ready to go."

And of course, once his senior season comes to a close, he'll be on his way to LSU-Eunice to fulfill a childhood dream of his to play baseball on the collegiate level.

"I'm really excited," Nickens said. "Since I was a little kid, I've watched college baseball, so now to be able to play at the college level is really special."