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2007 BCS Champions

2007 BCS
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2003 BCS National Champions

2003 BCS
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1958 National Champions

1958
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NCAA Baseball Championships:

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DandyDon is proud to recognize David Toms as a great ambassador of the Tiger Nation.

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3/29/15 5:58 am CT

Good morning, Tiger Fans,

The LSU baseball team bounced back from Friday’s loss with a 7-3 win over Kentucky last night to even the series at one game apiece. The rubber game of the series will be played today at 11 a.m. Freshman right-hander Jake Godfrey will get the start for the Tigers, and Kentucky will counter with junior right-hander Kyle Cody. The game will be available online only via SEC Network+ and can be accessed at WatchESPN.com and the WatchESPN app. It will also be broadcast live on LSU Radio Network affiliates, including 98.1 FM in Baton Rouge.

Freshman right-hander Alex Lange got the start for LSU last night and was once again spectacular. Lange lasted seven innings (116 pitches), allowed one run (unearned) on six hits, and matched his career-high in strikeouts with 13. Zac Person and Alden Cartwright each allowed one run in one inning of relief and allowed a combined five hits.

The Tigers collected 12 hits in the game, and every batter in LSU’s starting lineup had at least one hit. With the game tied 2-2 in the eighth inning, Chris Chinea lined a ball into centerfield that got “lodged” under a pipe at the base of the fence, but it was clearly retrievable. At first, the play was ruled a ground-rule double, but then Coach Mainieri stormed the field and vehemently argued that LSU’s ground rules (which were reviewed before the game and are posted in the dugouts) state that when this happens the ball is still live. Remarkably, the ruling was reversed, resulting in a 3-RBI inside-the-park home run for Chinea. Two batters later, Jared Foster smashed a 2-run homer over the left-field wall to give LSU added insurance.

Here are the game’s video highlights and boxscore

Unfortunately, the No. 1 LSU softball team suffered its second consecutive loss to No. 16 Kentucky in Lexington, this time by a score of 5-2. LSU entered the series with only one loss in 32 games and were swinging the bat better than any team in the country, but in the last two games they haven’t been able to get the timely hit and have left a combined 16 runners on base. For more on yesterday’s game, please see this article

Now turning to football, LSU held its third closed practice of the spring yesterday, and according to Coach Miles it was the strongest outing yet for the offense. I know that many of you are most interested in how the quarterbacks did (so I am), so we’ll start with that. After the first scrimmage of the spring, Miles gave Brandon Harris the edge, and after the second one he said Anthony Jennings had the better outing. After yesterday’s scrimmage, Miles wasn’t as specific, but the stats he dished out seem to indicate that Jennings had the better day. Jennings passed for 200 yards and four touchdowns while completing “eight or nine” of 14 throws. Harris, on the other hand, completed 10-12 passes (at first Miles said “a handful” but then he quantified that by saying he has big hands and it was probably 10-12) in 22 attempts and “played pretty well overall.” No yardage was specified. In this article, Miles was quoted as saying, “We want to find a real quality quarterback and have separation from one to the other. That’s what I’m looking for. I’m not necessarily seeing that. Certainly Anthony Jennings has probably performed better more days, and other days its Brandon Harris.” 

Below are a few more scrimmage stats and key points that I gathered from Coach Miles’ post-scrimmage chat with the media, and here’s the official press release on the scrimmage as sent out by LSU’s Sports Information Department:

• D.J. Chark continues to have a big spring and once again led all receivers. Chark caught a 70-yard TD pass on the first possession of the game and ended the game with 99 receiving yards and a score.

• Miles also praised wide receiver Trey Quinn, calling him “very competitive.” Quinn had two catches for 35 yards and a pair of TDs.

• Tight end Jacory Washington had two catches for 54 yards and a touchdown.

• Leonard Fournette continues to have an impressive spring, rushing for 100-plus yards and a touchdown. Miles said that Darrel Williams, “ran hard” and finished with 55 yards. As for the fullback position, Miles said JD Moore is doing a really good job.

• Defensively, Miles singled out linebacker Deion Jones (six tackles and pair of sacks), Duke Riley (7 tackles), Jamal Adams (6 tackles, 1 sack), Sione Teuhema (6 tackles, 1 fumble recovery, 1 TD). He also said Kendell Beckwith made some real significant speed plays. 

• Miles said Christian LaCouture and Devon Godchaux are the top defensive tackles, as expected, and added that Greg Gilmore is currently No. 3. Quentin Thomas hasn’t been practicing this spring in order to fully heal from a few nagging injuries, but should be good to go in the fall.

• Miles said they will be looking at freshman Donte Jackson as a return man when he reports in August. Travin Dural and TréDavious White are currently working as punt returners. 

In football recruiting news, several of LSU’s top targets participated at the New Orleans Regional Nike Opening yesterday. I spoke to a friend who attended the event and was told that LSU 2016 commits Donavaughn Campbell (OT, 6-5, 340, Ponchatoula, No. 11 on our list of Top LA Prospects) and Stephen Sullivan (ATH, 6-6, 230, No. 5) were extremely impressive. Campbell showed that he’s extremely light on his feet for a young man of 340 pounds, and Sullivan is an extremely well put together athlete at 6-6, 230 pounds. Sullivan was working as a receiver and making several spectacular catches, but has the frame to add 20-30 pounds and be an elite defensive end. LSU commits Clifford Chattman (2016, LB/S, 6-5, 190, McDonogh 35, No. 19),  Jamal Pettigrew (2016, TE, 6-6, 218, St. Augustine, No. 18 ) and Dylan Moses (2017, LB/RB, 6-2, 220, University Lab) were also at the event, although I didn’t get much feedback on them. Evidently Moses did very well as he and Sullivan were two of three Louisiana prospects who earned invitations to the Opening Finals in Oregon later this summer. The other in-state prospect to earn an invitation was Kriston Fulton (CB, 6-0, 165, Rummel, No. 9). 

As I usually do on Sundays, I’ll leave you today with a couple of good reads to go along with your Sunday morning coffee:

Miles wanted to keep Chavis, but had changes in mind

Rabalais: His resilience on display, Anthony Jennings won’t give up LSU’s starting quarterback job without a fight

Reader Comments: I remember you and others saying LSU should not pursue Jonathan Taylor, the big D-tackle who was kicked off of the Georgia team and then signed with Alabama. Looks like y’all were right. He was arrested again last night for domestic violence. Glad Miles passed on him.

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3/28/15 6:15 am CST

Good morning, Tiger Fans,

First of all, I want to thank all of you who wished me a happy birthday yesterday. I had an outstanding day working in the garden, eating supper with the family and then heading out for a long overdue night out with my wife. I don’t know what is says about my age when our night out ended long before the Friday night LSU baseball game did, but I’m not complaining. I was happy to be able to catch the last hour of the extra-innings game, even though it didn’t end the way any of us would have liked. 

In what Coach Mainieri described as one of the most frustrating losses of his career, the No. 1 ranked LSU baseball team lost to Kentucky, 5-4 in 12 innings. The Tigers left 15 men on base, including the bases loaded a couple of times, had a few base-running blunders, and didn’t take advantage of several opportunities to win the game. The Tigers also had a bit of misfortune in the 11th when what would have likely been a game-winning line drive by Hale hit Alex Bregman on the base path to end the inning. As I mentioned above, I didn’t get to listen to much of the game, so rather than give you my own report I’ll pass along to you the recap issued by LSU. But before doing so, I will comment on one play that a lot of you have asked me about. In the 11th inning the Tigers had runners on 1st and 2nd with no outs and freshman Greg Deichmann at the plate. Instead of bunting Deichmann, Mainieri let him swing away and he ended up hitting into a double play. The best possible explanation I can think of for Mainieri’s decision is that Deichmann, the Brother Martin High School career home run leader, probably had never been asked to bunt before in a game. Still, I suspect Coach Mainieri is regretting that decision, and others, today.

Below is an extract from LSU’s press release on the game, and here is the boxscore.

“This was one of the most frustrating games I’ve ever coached, because we made mistakes that we don’t usually make,” said LSU coach Paul Mainieri. “That falls back on coaching – it’s my responsibility to make sure we don’t make those kind of mistakes, and I have to make sure the players understand how to correct them and are prepared to execute the right way. Kentucky has a good ball club, so we have to brush this game off and look forward to tomorrow for a chance to even the series.”

In the top of the second, centerfielder Andrew Stevenson singled up the middle to lead off the inning, and first baseman Chris Chinea followed with a single through the right side. With runners on first and third and no outs, left fielder Jake Fraley grounded into a fielder’s choice to score Stevenson from third. After second baseman Jared Foster reached on a walk, designated hitter Chris Sciambra singled to right-centerfield, scoring Fraley from second base. The Tigers lead Kentucky 2-0 heading into the third inning.

Poche’ retired 12 straight batters, heading into the fifth inning. Kentucky second baseman JaVon Shelby reached on an error by third baseman Conner Hale. Poche’ worked out of the inning after giving up his first hit to right fielder Dorian Hairston.

In the top of the seventh with one out, Hairston doubled to right-centerfield, and third baseman Thomas Bernal followed with an RBI single. After Bernal advanced to second base with two outs, back-to-back singles by shortstop Connor Heady and centerfielder Kyle Barrett plated two runs for the Wildcats. Kentucky was up 3-2 heading into the bottom of the seventh.

With one out in the bottom of the seventh, Laird singled through the right side. Hale reached on an error by Bernal, allowing Hale to advance to second and Laird to score with two outs. The score was tied at 3-3 after seven innings, and the game eventually headed into extra innings.

In the top of the 12th, Barrett singled through the right side, and first baseman Evan White was hit by a pitch, putting runners on first and second for Tom with two outs.  Tom doubled down the right field line, and Kentucky took the 5-3 lead.

In the bottom of the 12th, pinch hitter Grayson Byrd and Andrew Stevenson reached on throwing errors by the third baseman and second baseman, respectively. After a sacrifice bunt moved the runners to scoring position, Fraley flied out to right field, scoring Byrd, leaving the score 5-4.

Jack retired Foster on a ground ball to shortstop to end the game.

I look forward to seeing LSU bounce back in Game 2 of the series today at 6:30 p.m. CT. The game will be available online only via SEC Network+ and can be accessed at WatchESPN.com and the WatchESPN app. It will also be broadcast live on LSU Radio Network affiliates, including 98.1 FM in Baton Rouge. Fans can also go to LSUsports.net for live stats and audio through the GeauxZone. Freshman right-hander Alex Lange will get the start on the mound for LSU, while Kentucky will counter with junior right-hander Dustin Beggs.

Unfortunately, the LSU softball team didn’t fare any better against Kentucky

than the baseball team. As the temperatures cooled in Lexington, so did LSU’s bats as the Tigers fell to the Wildcats 3-1 in the series opener.  LSU couldn’t capitalize with runners in scoring position and stranded five runners on base in the contest. It was such a slow night offensively for the Tigers, LSU didn’t get on the board until the sixth inning. A.J. Andrews led LSU at the plate, going 2-for-3 in the loss. For more on yesterday’s game, please see this article by LSUSports.net. The Tigers will look to even the series today at 11 a.m. in a game that will be televised by the SEC Network.

In football news, there was a mighty big buzz in the LSU indoor practice facility yesterday as nearly 100 NFL representatives, including NFL head coaches, gathered to watch LSU’s Pro Day. Danielle Hunter, Kwon Alexander, La’el Collins, Elliott Porter, Terrence Magee, Jalen Collins and Kenny Hilliard garnered the most attention for the Tigers. In a bit of a surprise,  Quantavious Leslie recorded the fastest 40-yard dash time with a 4.45, while Porter had the most bench press reps (225 pounds) with 34.  Another surprise was that Hilliard improved his 40-yard time from 4.83 at the NFL combine to an impressive 4.6 yesterday.  Danielle Hunter led the way with a 36.5-inch vertical jump and was also first in the broad jump with a leap of 10-feet, 10.5-inches. You can see the complete Pro Day results here. Among the NFL coaches in attendance was Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly, who was likely there to watch both Jalen Collins and La’el Collins. La’el is being looked at by many teams as either a guard or a tackle, and NFL scout Bucky Brooks said La’el could have an impact similar to Zach Martin’s for the Dallas Cowboys. Nick Underhill, who covers the New Orleans Saints for The New Orleans Advocate, tweeted that Jalen said the Saints were high on him. Jalen did not participate as he continues to recover from his foot surgery. NFL draft analyst Mike Loyko said New England Patriots running back coach Ivan Fears was present, likely getting a good look at both Terrence Magee and Kenny Hilliard. One side note from the event: LSU great Rohan Davey was the QB throwing passes during position drills. 

The LSU football team will hold it’s third closed scrimmage of the spring today, and I hope to have some stats to share with you in tomorrow’s update.

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3/27/15 5:47 am CST

Good morning, Tiger Fans,

The top-ranked LSU baseball team (22-3, 4-2) plays host to Kentucky (16-9, 2-4) this weekend in a three-game SEC home series starting tonight at 7 p.m. All three of this weekend’s games can be viewed online on SEC Network + (accessible at WatchESPN.com and via the WatchESPN app), and can be heard on affiliates of the LSU Sports Radio Network, including WDGL 98.1 FM in Baton Rouge. Normally I send out occasional tweets and score updates to those of you who follow DandyDonLSU on Twitter, but tonight I won’t be doing so since I will be out celebrating my birthday with my family.  I’ll still have a full recap of the game for you in tomorrow’s update, although it may be posted just a bit later than normal.  

Coach Mainieri has announced that he will go with his customary pitching rotation again this weekend, as noted in the pitching matchup listed below. Speaking of pitchers, a lot of you have asked me about the status of  highly-touted freshman left-handed pitcher Jake Latz who is dealing with an elbow injury. The latest I’ve heard is that Latz is about halfway through his throwing rehabilitation program, and there’s a chance he could be ready to begin pitching again in about a month. Coach Mainieri is hopeful that Latz will be able to contribute on the mound late in the season or in post-season play. (Writing that makes me realize how fast the season is going by. After this weekend’s games, the Tigers will be past the midway mark of the regular season. Actually, writing this on my 45th birthday makes me realize how fast life goes by, but that’s another story.) It is also being reported that freshman outfielder Beau Jordan, who suffered a knee injury that required surgery a month ago, has been cleared to return to action.

Here are the pitching matchups and times for this weekend’s games:

Friday, 7 p.m. CT (SEC Network Plus)
LSU – So. LHP Jared Poche’ (5-1, 3.37 ERA, 34.2 IP, 13 BB, 23 SO)
UK – So. RHP Zack Brown (2-2, 2.43 ERA, 33.1 IP, 15 BB, 31 SO) 

Saturday, 6:30 p.m. CT (SEC Network Plus)
LSU – Fr. RHP Alex Lange (5-0, 1.42 ERA, 38 IP, 10 BB, 45 SO)
UK – Jr. RHP Dustin Beggs (3-2, 3.44 ERA, 36.2 IP, 10 BB, 28 SO)
 
Sunday, 11 a.m. CT (SEC Network Plus)
LSU – Fr. RHP Jake Godfrey (5-0, 2.25 ERA, 32 IP, 18 BB, 18 SO)
UK – Jr. RHP Kyle Cody (2-2, 4.88 ERA, 31.1 IP, 7 BB, 30 SO) 

The LSU football team returned to action yesterday for their ninth practice of the spring, and I was able to gather the following tidbits from media reports:

• Jim Kleinpeter of Nola.com reports that tight end DeSean Smith and defensive tackle Frank Herron were not present during the portion of the practice the media is allowed to view.  In his report is a 5:01 video of the Big Cat drill which featured a big win by WR Travin Dural over CB Kevin Toliver. 

• Ross Dellenger of The Advocate reports that cornerback Dwayne Thomas (knee surgery) remained in a green no-contact jersey, and offensive lineman K.J. Malone was also in a green no-contact jersey for unknown reasons. Dellenger also noted that Lewis Neal was working with the first string at defensive end. 

Yesterday evening after practice, the media conducted a few interviews with LSU players and some interesting tidbits emerged. In this report by The Advocate, Dellenger writes about the many changes defensive coordinator Kevin Steele is implementing. He also writes that quarterback Brandon Harris said he had five or six touchdowns in the Tigers’ first scrimmage of the spring. In this report by Nola.com, Kleinpeter quotes Harris as saying that the his improvement is “like night and day compared to last spring.”

Today LSU will hold its Pro Day event (scroll down for the schedule in yesterday’s report), and tomorrow the team will hold its third closed scrimmage. Next week the team will practice twice (Tuesday and Thursday) before taking off eight days for Spring Break. The following week the team will practice two times before concluding the 15-practice spring session with the National L-Club Spring Game on Saturday, April 18 at 2 p.m. in Tiger Stadium. 

Yesterday it was officially announced that LSU’s Spring Game will be available for live viewing via SEC Network Plus (online only), and that the SEC Network will also air the game on regular television on Monday, April 20. 

I’ll close out today’s report with another brief personal note: By the time most of you are reading this, I will have started my annual birthday ritual of planting my spring garden. Each year I promise myself that I won’t plant until this day, but I usually get impatient and start my planting a few weeks early, as I did this year. I already have a dozen tomato plants in the ground and I sowed my sweet corn earlier this week. So today, it’s more tomatoes, beans, eggplants, peppers, cucumbers, squash and a few herbs. Simple pleasures, here I come.

 

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