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LSU vs. Wisconsin at Lambeau Field - September 3rd, 2:30PM
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7/24/16 5:50 am CST

Good morning Tiger Fans,

In recruiting news, LSU picked up its 16th commitment of the 2017 recruiting class yesterday when West Virginia native Seth Stewart announced his pledge. Stewart (6’8”, 320, Point Pleasant, WV), the No. 6 prospect in West Virginia, received an offer on the final day of LSU’s three-day high school camp and wasted no time in committing. The massive O-lineman was previously committed to Marshall and holds a handful of other offers including Arkansas, Louisville, West Virginia and Pittsburg. With his commitment, the Tigers now have four offensive linemen in this class and they all have great size. The other three are Edward Ingram (6-4, 325), Saahdiq Charles (6-5, 314) and Austin Deculus (6-6, 323). 

After Stewart’s announcement yesterday, 247Sports released its updated team rankings for the 2017 recruiting class and LSU was No. 5 with one 5-star, seven 4-star and eight 3-star prospects. Alabama (No. 2) and Georgia (No. 3) were also in the top 5 with Ohio State ranked at No. 1.

The Tigers also got a surprise visit yesterday from 2017 wide receiver prospect Devonta Smith. You might recall that Smith, an Amite High School product, recently revealed his top-four schools and didn’t include LSU, saying that LSU’s offense just wasn’t the right fit for him. Well, after visiting with the Tigers yesterday, he tweeted that he has a new top three of Miami LSU, and Alabama. That’s obviously great news, as Smith is a four-star receiver and the No. 2 overall player on our list of Top LA Prospects

Also on the recruiting front, Class of 2017 Rivals 250 linebacker and four-star prospect Jacob Phillips announced his final five schools yesterday, and LSU was included on that list along with Alabama, Oklahoma, Notre Dame and Oregon. Phillips is quoted as saying LSU is high on his list because of defensive coordinator Dave Aranda, noting that Aranda is changing LSU’s defense and that he feels he fits well in his 3-4 scheme. Those comments indicate the Tigers have a very strong chance of luring the Nashville, Tennessee native, and that’s great news considering what a priority linebackers are in this recruiting class. The Tigers currently only have one 2017 LB on board, instate sensation Patrick Queen (6-1, 215) of Livonia.

Before continuing our countdown to LSU’s season opener, we are going to begin a new series today on returning Tigers who will likely play greater roles this season, starting with the offense. Although the Tigers return nine starters on offense, there are some key backups and new starters who will play critical roles in 2016. One is senior offensive lineman Josh Boutte, who played just 75 offensive snaps as a junior in 2015. At SEC media days, head coach Les Miles noted that Boutte, who is currently projected to start at right guard, may be one of the more dominant players they have. Another is sophomore wide receiver Tyron Johnson. Although the Tigers have two great receivers returning in senior Travin Dural and junior Malachi Dupré, Johnson (6’1”, 189 lbs), could be a significant contributor, especially in three-wide receiver sets. Johnson only had 150 receiving yards on nine receptions in 2015, but his two touchdowns came in the back half of the season, including a very nice 39-yard TD at Ole Miss that helped bring LSU back in that contest. Sophomore Toby Weathersby (6’5”, 292 lbs), who made his only start last season at Ole Miss, is likely the starter at right tackle, and junior KJ Malone (6’4”, 298), who is competing for starting positions at left tackle, left guard and center, could be LSU’s utility man across the offensive line who adds quality depth needed to impose the Tigers’ physical running game against the SEC’s premier defensive lines. One last offensive weapon LSU will rely heavily on in 2016 is redshirt junior fullback J.D. Moore, who was injured in LSU’s fifth game last year and made just one other brief appearance in 2015. In Moore’s five starts at fullback, Leonard Fournette totaled 1,022 yards on 119 carries, an average of 8.6 yards per carry. With Moore out for all but one of the final seven regular season games, Fournette totaled just 719 yards on 152 carries, an average of just 4.7 yards per carry. While the level of competition certainly was a factor in that decreased productivity, it’s clear that Moore was a huge factor in Fournette’s early season success, so it will be critical for him to remain healthy in 2016. 

With 41 days remaining until LSU’s season opener vs Wisconsin at Lambeau Field on September 3rd, let’s look at one of LSU’s best wide receivers of all-time who wore No. 41, Eric Martin. A Van Vieck, Texas native, Martin was recruited as a running back by then head coach Jerry Stovall. As a freshman in 1981, he finished third on the team in rushing with 290 yards but also had an LSU record 100-yard kickoff return vs. Kentucky in a 24-10 victory in Baton Rouge. With a thin receiving corps coming back in 1982 and a star-studded running back tandem of Dalton Hilliard and Garry James arriving on campus, Stovall and then offensive coordinator Mack Brown decided to move Martin to wide receiver. Despite the change, Martin immediately flourished as a split end, catching 45 passes for 817 yards and seven touchdowns in helping lead LSU to an 8-3-1 season that included a dominating 55-21 victory over Florida State that locked up an invite to the 1983 Orange Bowl. Although LSU struggled to a 4-7 season in 1983, Martin excelled by catching 52 passes for a then school-record 1,064 receiving yards and five touchdowns while earning First-Team All American honors. The 1,064 receiving yards were the third-most in SEC history at that time. After a successful senior season in 1984 (47 receptions, 668 yards), Martin, a First-Team All-SEC selection for the second consecutive season, was selected in the seventh round of the 1985 NFL draft by the New Orleans Saints. Despite naysayers noting Martin lacked speed to be a wide receiver (he was clocked at 4.65 in the 40-yard dash at a 1985 pre-draft workout), Eric’s determination overcame his supposed limitations and allowed him to enjoy a highly successful 10-year career (nine with the Saints and one with Kansas City) that resulted in 8,161 receiving yards, 49 touchdowns and a 1988 Pro Bowl. Martin also helped lead the Saints to their first playoff berth in 1987. Bobby Hebert, who starred as the New Orleans Saints quarterback from 1985-1992, may have said it best when he noted that Martin “knew his abilities and he had a lot of confidence in his abilities. If I put the ball anywhere around him, he was confident that that he would go and catch it.”

Today’s closing tidbits:

LSU men’s basketball coach Johnny Jones appeared on ESPN Radio recently to discuss the recent events in Baton Rouge on the podcast “Capital Games”, which is hosted by ESPN’s Andy Katz and Rick Klein of ABC News. You can listen to the full podcast here.

Here’s a cool video of two current LSU wide receivers, DJ Chark and Drake Davis, racing during LSU’s camp. Chark edges Davis by half a step, and considering Chark is said to be the team’s fastest player, this proves that Davis has elite speed as well.

I’ll leave you today with a couple of good articles to go along with your Sunday Morning coffee, and an update on my family fishing trip as lagniappe.

• Dale Brown to have basketball courts named after him in his North Dakota hometown.

• Back at home: About to embark on his third NFL season, Jarvis Landry returns to Lutcher to give back

Lagniappe: I took my three daughters, my wife and my in-laws out to my favorite creek yesterday afternoon to do a little fishing. We had a great time while catching several small perch to use as bait for that elusive catfish I’ve mentioned lately. I was able to bait up five set poles (bank lines) which I’ll run in a few minutes even though I’m not feeling very confident based on the water level. I am, however, confident in being able to land several more bass after catching six (see pic) in less than an hour of fishing late yesterday evening after the poles were set. With any luck, I’ll have another pic or two to post tomorrow. Wish me luck, and enjoy your Sunday, Tiger Fans.


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7/24/16 5:50 am CST

Good morning Tiger Fans,

In recruiting news, LSU picked up its 16th commitment of the 2017 recruiting class yesterday when West Virginia native Seth Stewart announced his pledge. Stewart (6’8”, 320, Point Pleasant, WV), the No. 6 prospect in West Virginia, received an offer on the final day of LSU’s three-day high school camp and wasted no time in committing. The massive O-lineman was previously committed to Marshall and holds a handful of other offers including Arkansas, Louisville, West Virginia and Pittsburg. With his commitment, the Tigers now have four offensive linemen in this class and they all have great size. The other three are Edward Ingram (6-4, 325), Saahdiq Charles (6-5, 314) and Austin Deculus (6-6, 323). 

After Stewart’s announcement yesterday, 247Sports released its updated team rankings for the 2017 recruiting class and LSU was No. 5 with one 5-star, seven 4-star and eight 3-star prospects. Alabama (No. 2) and Georgia (No. 3) were also in the top 5 with Ohio State ranked at No. 1.

The Tigers also got a surprise visit yesterday from 2017 wide receiver prospect Devonta Smith. You might recall that Smith, an Amite High School product, recently revealed his top-four schools and didn’t include LSU, saying that LSU’s offense just wasn’t the right fit for him. Well, after visiting with the Tigers yesterday, he tweeted that he has a new top three of Miami LSU, and Alabama. That’s obviously great news, as Smith is a four-star receiver and the No. 2 overall player on our list of Top LA Prospects

Also on the recruiting front, Class of 2017 Rivals 250 linebacker and four-star prospect Jacob Phillips announced his final five schools yesterday, and LSU was included on that list along with Alabama, Oklahoma, Notre Dame and Oregon. Phillips is quoted as saying LSU is high on his list because of defensive coordinator Dave Aranda, noting that Aranda is changing LSU’s defense and that he feels he fits well in his 3-4 scheme. Those comments indicate the Tigers have a very strong chance of luring the Nashville, Tennessee native, and that’s great news considering what a priority linebackers are in this recruiting class. The Tigers currently only have one 2017 LB on board, instate sensation Patrick Queen (6-1, 215) of Livonia.

Before continuing our countdown to LSU’s season opener, we are going to begin a new series today on returning Tigers who will likely play greater roles this season, starting with the offense. Although the Tigers return nine starters on offense, there are some key backups and new starters who will play critical roles in 2016. One is senior offensive lineman Josh Boutte, who played just 75 offensive snaps as a junior in 2015. At SEC media days, head coach Les Miles noted that Boutte, who is currently projected to start at right guard, may be one of the more dominant players they have. Another is sophomore wide receiver Tyron Johnson. Although the Tigers have two great receivers returning in senior Travin Dural and junior Malachi Dupré, Johnson (6’1”, 189 lbs), could be a significant contributor, especially in three-wide receiver sets. Johnson only had 150 receiving yards on nine receptions in 2015, but his two touchdowns came in the back half of the season, including a very nice 39-yard TD at Ole Miss that helped bring LSU back in that contest. Sophomore Toby Weathersby (6’5”, 292 lbs), who made his only start last season at Ole Miss, is likely the starter at right tackle, and junior KJ Malone (6’4”, 298), who is competing for starting positions at left tackle, left guard and center, could be LSU’s utility man across the offensive line who adds quality depth needed to impose the Tigers’ physical running game against the SEC’s premier defensive lines. One last offensive weapon LSU will rely heavily on in 2016 is redshirt junior fullback J.D. Moore, who was injured in LSU’s fifth game last year and made just one other brief appearance in 2015. In Moore’s five starts at fullback, Leonard Fournette totaled 1,022 yards on 119 carries, an average of 8.6 yards per carry. With Moore out for all but one of the final seven regular season games, Fournette totaled just 719 yards on 152 carries, an average of just 4.7 yards per carry. While the level of competition certainly was a factor in that decreased productivity, it’s clear that Moore was a huge factor in Fournette’s early season success, so it will be critical for him to remain healthy in 2016. 

With 41 days remaining until LSU’s season opener vs Wisconsin at Lambeau Field on September 3rd, let’s look at one of LSU’s best wide receivers of all-time who wore No. 41, Eric Martin. A Van Vieck, Texas native, Martin was recruited as a running back by then head coach Jerry Stovall. As a freshman in 1981, he finished third on the team in rushing with 290 yards but also had an LSU record 100-yard kickoff return vs. Kentucky in a 24-10 victory in Baton Rouge. With a thin receiving corps coming back in 1982 and a star-studded running back tandem of Dalton Hilliard and Garry James arriving on campus, Stovall and then offensive coordinator Mack Brown decided to move Martin to wide receiver. Despite the change, Martin immediately flourished as a split end, catching 45 passes for 817 yards and seven touchdowns in helping lead LSU to an 8-3-1 season that included a dominating 55-21 victory over Florida State that locked up an invite to the 1983 Orange Bowl. Although LSU struggled to a 4-7 season in 1983, Martin excelled by catching 52 passes for a then school-record 1,064 receiving yards and five touchdowns while earning First-Team All American honors. The 1,064 receiving yards were the third-most in SEC history at that time. After a successful senior season in 1984 (47 receptions, 668 yards), Martin, a First-Team All-SEC selection for the second consecutive season, was selected in the seventh round of the 1985 NFL draft by the New Orleans Saints. Despite naysayers noting Martin lacked speed to be a wide receiver (he was clocked at 4.65 in the 40-yard dash at a 1985 pre-draft workout), Eric’s determination overcame his supposed limitations and allowed him to enjoy a highly successful 10-year career (nine with the Saints and one with Kansas City) that resulted in 8,161 receiving yards, 49 touchdowns and a 1988 Pro Bowl. Martin also helped lead the Saints to their first playoff berth in 1987. Bobby Hebert, who starred as the New Orleans Saints quarterback from 1985-1992, may have said it best when he noted that Martin “knew his abilities and he had a lot of confidence in his abilities. If I put the ball anywhere around him, he was confident that that he would go and catch it.”

Today’s closing tidbits:

LSU men’s basketball coach Johnny Jones appeared on ESPN Radio recently to discuss the recent events in Baton Rouge on the podcast “Capital Games”, which is hosted by ESPN’s Andy Katz and Rick Klein of ABC News. You can listen to the full podcast here.

Here’s a cool video of two current LSU wide receivers, DJ Chark and Drake Davis, racing during LSU’s camp. Chark edges Davis by half a step, and considering Chark is said to be the team’s fastest player, this proves that Davis has elite speed as well.

I’ll leave you today with a couple of good articles to go along with your Sunday Morning coffee, and an update on my family fishing trip as lagniappe.

• Dale Brown to have basketball courts named after him in his North Dakota hometown.

• Back at home: About to embark on his third NFL season, Jarvis Landry returns to Lutcher to give back

Lagniappe: I took my three daughters, my wife and my in-laws out to my favorite creek yesterday afternoon to do a little fishing. We had a great time while catching several small perch to use as bait for that elusive catfish I’ve mentioned lately. I was able to bait up five set poles (bank lines) which I’ll run in a few minutes even though I’m not feeling very confident based on the water level. I am, however, confident in being able to land several more bass after catching six (see pic) in less than an hour of fishing late yesterday evening after the poles were set. With any luck, I’ll have another pic or two to post tomorrow. Wish me luck, and enjoy your Sunday, Tiger Fans.

7/23/16 5:40 am CST

Good morning, Tiger Fans,

LSU held Day 2 of its Elite Camp yesterday and I had the pleasure of watching a couple hours of it. With so many kids working out at various stations, it’s not always easy to tell who is who or find the prospects you’re looking for, but there are always a few prospects who stand out from the crowd. In today’s report, I’ll list a few Tiger targets and commitments who caught my eye during the brief time that I was there, as well as a few other tidbits from the camp. But first, there’s this news to report:

Last night, LSU picked up a commitment for the Class of 2019 and he’s a mighty big boy – offensive lineman Kardell Thomas of Southern Lab. Get this: He’s 6-foot-4 and weighs 320-pounds and hasn’t even begun his sophomore year in high school. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to see him in the brief time I was at camp yesterday, but I sure wish I would have. Based on these video highlights, he’s quite a force to be reckoned with. Thomas joins cornerbacks Maurice Hampton of Memphis and Derek Stingley of Baton Rouge to give LSU three early commits for the 2019 class.

Now for those Elite Camp notes and observations:

• 2017 defensive end prospect Alec Jackson (6-5, 270) of Jefferson Davis High School in Montgomery, Alabama caught my eye early on with his impressive size (see photo) and a long jump of 88.5 inches, which is outstanding for someone who weighs 270 pounds. I was told by a source close to Jackson that he’s had an LSU offer since April and he likes LSU, but he also likes a lot of other schools and is just exploring his options at this time. Whoever ends up getting this young man will have a heck of a prospect. 

• Running back Travis Etienne (5-11, 199) of Jennings  has a reputation for excelling in camp settings where he consistently scores high in all the testing. He lived up to that reputation yesterday by registering a 36-inch vertical jump (see photo), and a 99-inch long jump. Currently committed to Texas A&M,  Etienne doesn’t yet hold an LSU offer and it appears that his only drawback may be his size. He looks a bit smaller than his indicted height and weight and doesn’t have the type of frame that suggests he could bulk up quickly. Still, he’s a baller, and I get the feeling that he could be in LSU’s backup plan at running back should things not work out with Cam Akers of Clinton, MS.

• With linebacker being a big position of need for LSU, I was hoping to check out Will Ingot, the LB from New Market, Alabama, who I mentioned recently, and Ladarius Fagan, the LB from Miami, Florida, who is rumored to be on the verge of committing. I did see Fagan very briefly, but I did not see Ingot while there. From what I understand, he arrived after I left. One 2017 linebacker who did catch my eye with an impressive performance was Hammond’s Davion May (6-2, 215). I was told that he also stood out at LSU’s 7-on-7 camp last week and is one to watch. Another to keep on your radar is a kid by the name of Monty Rice (6-1, 227) of Madison, Alabama who I hear was very impressive in Day 1 of the camp.

• An in-state cornerback who caught my eye was Amik Robertson (5-9, 175) of Thibodaux. He’s a little undersized but won almost every one of his repetitions when going up against the camp’s top receiver talent. He also ran a blazing hot 4.43 forty. Robertson holds double-digit offers but doesn’t yet have one from LSU, although I wouldn’t be surprised to see one come his way soon.

• As for Class of 2018 targets, wide receiver Kenan Jones (6-3, 205, see photo) of Berwick High, who received an LSU offer in Day 1 of the camp, was quite impressive and looks like a great get for the Tigers. He had Coach Dameyune Craig’s attention almost the entire time I was there and is obviously someone LSU wants badly. Tight end Glenn Beal of John Curtis (6-4, 255) is also someone who had the staff’s attention and looks like the prototypical blocking tight end Les Miles “enjoys” having on his teams. One of the most impressive of all the 2018 targets was quarterback Jack Tuttle (6-4, 190, see photo) of San Marcos, CA. He’s got a rocket for an arm and exudes confidence. 

• As for players currently committed to LSU for 2017, I was quite impressed with wide receiver Mannie Netherly (6-2, 183) of Crosby, Texas (check out his moves in this video to see why), and offensive lineman Saahdiq Charles (6-5, 314) of Madison, Mississippi. In this pic, you can see just how big Charles is as he’s standing next to offensive line coach Jeff Grimes. And, though I didn’t see it, I heard that athlete Patrick Queen (6-1, 218) of Livonia put on a show and ran the forty in 4.49. 

• One more note from the camp that has nothing to do with recruits: I saw LSU freshman tight end Foster Moreau talking on the sidelines to LSU quarterback Danny Etling. (See pic.) Both are great looking players, but I was really surprised by how big and well built Moreau is. I get the feeling he could see the field early and will be a heck of a player before his time as a Tiger is up. 

While LSU did not pick up any commitments for 2017 yesterday, one or more will likely be coming very soon. I’m still on the lookout for LB Ladarius Fagan to commit in the near future (possibly before leaving camp today) and two big LSU targets are announcing their schools of choice Sunday. One is cornerback Kary Vincent (5-11, 170) of Port Arthur, Texas, who will be making his decision at about 7 pm CT tomorrow. I’ve been told that LSU is very confident in him being a Tiger. The other is Isaiah Buggs (6-5 280, MGCCC), the No. 1 JUCO defensive end in the country. The word is that his decision is expected on Sunday as well. Buggs was once believed to be leaning to LSU, but the timing of his announcement, combined with the fact that he was at Auburn yesterday, makes me a little suspicious. 

Moving on… It’s hard to believe that in just six weeks (42 days) it will be LSU Game Day, and with that in mind let’s close out today’s report with our countdown and look at an All-American Tiger who wore No. 42 - Jimmy Taylor. Taylor came to LSU from Baton Rouge High where he excelled in both football and basketball and was the first player selected to play in All-America games in both sports. At LSU, Taylor played fullback and was named an All-American in 1957. His final game as a Tiger, a 25-6 victory over Tulane, marked the start of a 22-game winning streak for the Tigers. That game came after Paul Dietzel’s team had suffered four consecutive losses, scoring a total of only five touchdowns in the four contests. The Tigers needed a victory over their in-state rival to salvage a .500 record after two consecutive losing seasons. It was a critical juncture for Dietzel, and Taylor came to his rescue by rushing for 171 yards, the second highest total in the school’s history at that time, including touchdown runs of 48 and 32 yards in a 25-6 victory that set the stage for a national championship season a year later. The big performance also set the stage for a brilliant pro career for Taylor who was selected by the Packers in the second round of the 1958 NFL Draft as the 15th overall pick. Taylor went on to eight very successful seasons with the Packers and was a six-time All-Pro selection and a member of the winning team in Super Bowl I on January 15, 1967, when the Packers defeated the Chiefs 35-10. In 1967, Taylor played a season with the expansion New Orleans Saints and then retired from pro football. In 1974, Taylor was inducted into the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame, and two years later he was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

That’s it for today. If any news breaks from the football camp, I’ll try to tweet it as soon as I can, although that might not be until later tonight after my lines are all baited. Wish me luck.

7/22/16 5:55 am CST

Good morning, Tiger Fans,

By the time many of you are reading this, I’ll be heading to Baton Rouge to check out LSU’s “Elite” recruiting camp which got underway yesterday. Hopefully, I’ll have some pics and/or video to share with you tomorrow. And, if all goes well, I’ll have more pics to share with you Sunday morning, but they’d be of a different sort. Remember that catfish in a winding, cypress-lined bayou I mentioned recently? Well, I’ll be looking to lure him out of his comfort zone and onto my stringer this weekend. But I digress.

In yesterday’s opening day of the camp, LSU reportedly extended three new scholarship offers – one for the class of 2017 and two for 2018. Jimmy Smith of nola.com reports that safety Brad Stewart (6-0, 195, No. 9 on our list of Top LA Prospects for 2017) received an offer after turning in a very impressive afternoon session which included logging a 4.5 forty-yard dash. As for the 2018 prospects, Shea Dixon of 247Sports reports that wide receiver Kenan Jones (6-3, 205) of Berwick High received an offer, as did quarterback Justin Rogers (6-4, 195) of Bossier City’s Parkway High School, the same school Brandon Harris attended. Another class of 2018 prospect who turned heads was athlete Anthony Williams (5-8, 165) of Hahnville when he ran a blazing fast 4.3 forty. He goes by the nickname “Pooka,” and that’s a name to remember. Another Class of 2018 name to remember is Jake Tuttle. He’s a big-time pro-style quarterback from San Marcos, California who is camping at LSU this weekend. He has held an LSU offer since May, and from what I understand Coach Cam Cameron is really high on him. Judging by the fact that Tuttle flew in from California for the camp, I’d say the admiration is mutual. LSU currently has two big-time, four-star QB commits for 2017 – Myles Brennan and Lowell Narcisse – and one four-star QB commit for 2018 in Zadock Dinkleman of Somerset, TX. 

Now for three quick-hitting tidbits before moving on with our countdown to Game Day

Bruce Feldman of Fox Sports has ranked the 10 best offensive lines in college football and pegged LSU at No. 2 behind Clemson. Feldman praised the projected starters and advised fans to remember the name Donavaughn Campbell, “a 6-5, 350-pound freshman road-grader at guard that the staff is excited about.” I couldn’t agree more.

USAToday’s Jason Lisk published his rankings of The Most Overrated College Football Programs of the Last Decade and three SEC teams made his top ten. Two of them are Florida at No. 9 and Georgia topping the list at No. 1. The other was LSU at No. 7. His rationale is that only once in the last 10 years has LSU been ranked outside the top 14 in preseason polls, but since the 2007 national championship, LSU has as many seasons where they finished unranked as in the top 12.

• Former LSU quarterback Rohan Davey joined Matt Moscona on ESPN Radio yesterday to give his thoughts on LSU’s 2016 season: “No excuses. It's prime time. Everything's set. The team is set. They're working their behinds off. All we got to do is play (quarterback). We play the position, we're going to put ourselves in position to do great things at the end of the year. There's no excuses this year. None at all.” With all the talent LSU has returning this year, I’m sure that’s a sentiment many Tiger fans can get behind.

Now, with 43 days remaining until LSU’s highly-anticipated season opener vs Wisconsin at Lambeau Field, let’s continue our countdown by looking at a longstanding rushing record: 43 attempts by Charles Alexander in LSU’s 66-7 over Wyoming in 1977. For the first two years of his LSU career, Alexander played primarily as a backup to Terry Robiskie, and that was probably a good thing considering the 1977 team relied heavily on the junior running back to help carry the offense. The Tiger passing offense struggled in completing just 42.9% of its passes and totaling just 1,190 yards in 11 regular season contests, an average of only 108.2 yards per game. Consequently, LSU heavily depended on the running game and its main halfback, Alexander. Charles came into the regular season finale vs. Wyoming already having 268 carries, an average of 26.8 carries per contest. In fact, Alexander had just set the single-game rushing attempts record the previous week with 41 carries and 199 yards in a 20-17 victory at Tulane. Although LSU held a commanding 37-7 lead at halftime vs. Wyoming with Alexander already having 24 carries, 103 yards and two touchdowns, the Tigers continued to feed him the ball in the second half as he toted the rock 19 times for an additional 128 yards and one score. For the 11 regular season games (bowl statistics didn’t count back then), Alexander finished with school records of 311 carries for 1,686 yards (5.4 yards per carry) and 17 rushing touchdowns. For his excellent performance on the field, Alexander earned First-Team All-American awards, a feat he’d repeat in his senior season of 1978. 

Interestingly, the 2015 team was very similar in the fact that its passing game struggled and the offense relied heavily on the running game and its star running back Leonard Fournette. In 12 contests, the sophomore running back tallied 300 carries for 1,953 yards (6.5 yards per carry) and 22 rushing touchdowns in earning First-Team All-American awards. With 2016 likely being Fournette’s final season, will LSU once again put the bulk of the workload on him, or will the passing game increase its production? Will Derrius Guice, who rushed for 445 yards on just 51 attempts (8.5 yards per carry) share more of the workload? Whatever the case may be, the Tiger offense will need to be less predictable in 2016 in order to keep tough defenses like Alabama, Arkansas and Florida from stacking the box against Fournette.

Speaking of Fournette, I’ll leave you with this awesome new hype video featuring the Heisman hopeful that you have to check out. It’s by Tiger fan “Bonstonker,” and it’s sure to put a little spring in your step this Friday morning. Have a great day, Tiger Fans, and be sure to return tomorrow for your daily fix.

Reader Comments: Hey Scott, Just wanted to tell you to be on the lookout for Alex Bregman to get called up today. Fresno is playing in Round Rock, TX and the Astros are coming home to play the Angels. It has been announced that AJ Reed will be reassigned to Fresno (possible switch off) and an article in the Houston Chronicle and at Astros.com speculates a possible call up as soon as tonight’s game.

 

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