10/23/18 5:40 am CT
Good morning, Tiger Fans,
Those of you who’ve followed this site throughout the season know that we go with our quick-hitting format for our Tuesday report. Usually, that’s because there’s lots of info to share from the coach’s Monday press luncheon. This week, however, there was no press conference since it’s a bye week, but there was still plenty of miscellaneous info to throw together to fill the bill. Let’s jump right to it…
Tuesday Tidbits - Your Daily Dose of Tiger News Delivered in a Baker’s Dozen Quick Hitters
1. Let’s start with some good news to file in the “as expected” category: Next Saturday’s big game against top-ranked Alabama will take place under the lights of Tiger Stadium. The SEC announced yesterday that it will kick off at 7 p.m. CT and be televised by CBS. The early betting line has LSU as a 14-point underdog, and if I were a betting man, I’d gladly take those odds. I can’t explain it, but I just have a feeling this could be the Tigers’ year. Eleven days and counting!
2. One thing that makes me feel better about LSU’s matchup against Alabama, in addition to it being a night game in Tiger Stadium, is that these Tigers are much more battle-tested than the Crimson Tide. In fact, they’re more battle-tested than any of the national contenders. One of my readers shared this bit of info to back up that claim:
The number in parenthesis is the strength of schedule ranking for each of this week’s Top 10 teams.
1. Alabama (51)
2. Clemson (40)
3. Notre Dame (36)
4. LSU (8)
5. Michigan (20)
6. Texas (19)
7. Georgia (47)
8. Oklahoma (21)
9. Florida (31)
10. UCF (127)
3. If you want to express your disagreement with the targeting call on Devin White or his subsequent suspension, a few fans have proposed a way to do so: Wear white on Saturday night in Death Valley. This movement, dubbed the “White Out” seems to be gaining traction and was reported on by WBRZ in Baton Rouge. Also, a fan started a GoFundMe account to raise funds to purchase billboards in Birmingham, the home of SEC headquarters, to let them know it's time to #FreeDevinWhite. The account has already raised over $5,000 and the latest word is that two billboards will be going up shortly.
4. With this being a bye week, the LSU staff is busy on the recruiting trail. According to 247Sports, the staff’s first stop will be to see 4-star quarterback commit TJ Finley. Another player I’ve heard Coach Ed Orgeron will be visiting is someone we haven’t written much about, defensive end Myron Warren of Many High. Sources tell me LSU has shown increased interest in him since his recent de-commitment from TCU.
5. In other recruiting news, here’s what I’m hearing about a couple of major running back targets. Sources tell me that Louisiana’s top-running back prospect, John Emery of Destrehan, has taken note of Georgia’s depth at his position and is giving a lot of thought to his commitment to the Bulldogs. I was told before last week’s game that LSU was still very much in consideration, as was Mississippi State. Another major running back target, Trey Sanders of IMG Academy has scheduled an official visit to LSU for the Alabama game. He is considered a lean to Bama at this time, but a big upset in an electric Tiger Stadium could have a lot to say about that.
6. Before going any further, a few congratulations are in order. Zach Von Rosenburg was named to Ray Guy’s Ray 8 List after averaging 43.7 yards on seven punts, including two that were downed inside the 10-yard line; Grant Delpit and Greedy Williams were named as semifinalists for the Thorpe Award, and Delpit and Cole Tracy earned SEC Player of the Week honors. This is the second week in a row Tracy was named the SEC Special Teams Player of the Week, and it’s easy to see why since he accounted for 13 of LSU's points on Saturday. As for Delpit, he tallied ten tackles and two interceptions in the win.
7. Speaking of interceptions, LSU leads the nation in picks with 14 and is sixth nationally and tops in the SEC in defensive passer rating. Talk about DBU, baby!
8. Craving more sights and sounds from last Saturday’s win in Tiger Stadium which was somewhat overshadowed by the news of Devin White’s suspension? Here are some cool field-level highlights by Tiger TV that provide an interesting perspective.
9. Turning to hoops, LSU is ranked 23rd in the 2018-19 preseason men’s basketball poll, as voted on by media throughout the country and distributed Monday by the Associated Press. Kansas checked in at No. 1 with four other SEC teams listed in the top-25: Kentucky No. 2, Tennessee No. 6, Auburn No. 11 and Mississippi State No. 18. LSU’s ranking is the highest for the program since being ranked No. 22 on Nov. 23, 2015.
10. Members of the media got to visit with Coach Wade and players on the team during yesterday’s Media Day event. LSUSports.net published this thorough recap of what was revealed. It includes, among other things, Wade’s thoughts on how this team compares to last year’s squad, the need to build better habits, and the team’s emphasis on better defense and better rebounding. Two players will play a big role in that regard are freshman phenom Naz Reid and Oregon transfer Kavell Bigby-Williams. Wade also revealed that former baseball player Will Reese has joined the basketball team as a walk-on, and that junior guard Marlon Taylor has a broken pinky that will keep him out of practice for a few weeks.
11. The men’s basketball team opens its season on Tuesday, Nov. 6 against Southeastern at 7:30 p.m. as part of a doubleheader with the LSU Lady Tigers at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center. Yesterday Coach Will Wade said LSU has sold 6,400-6,500 season tickets and wants to get to 7,000, which would put them in the top five in the SEC in terms of percentage of arena filled. It would also be the most since early to mid-90s.
12. One more bit of hoops news: Coach Will Wade picked up a commitment yesterday from Florida SouthWestern State College shooting guard Charles Manning (6-6, 180). Manning joins combo guard James Bishop of Baltimore, Md. to give LSU two commitments for 2019. Neither are highly rated, but both are said to be the kind of shooters who can put up points in a hurry. I fully trust Coach Wade’s evaluations.
13. Lagniappe: At the beginning of the football season, I asked you to predict LSU’s regular season record. Expectations weren’t especially high at that time as the winning vote getter by a large margin was 8-4. Considering where we are today, 7-1 with games against Alabama, Rice, Arkansas, and Texas A&M remaining, I thought it would be a great time to ask you again. So, if you’ve got 30 seconds to spare on this Tuesday, please take a moment to cast your vote: What will LSU football’s record be at the end of the regular season?
Oh, and please note that I’ll be updating our Ticket Exchange later today. If you have LSU tickets for sale, please send me your info for posting.