NCAA Baseball Championships:
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2/28/14 5:55 am CT
Good morning, Tiger Fans,
The LSU baseball team (7-1) will return to action at 7:00 tonight with the first of a three-game weekend series against Yale at Alex Box Stadium, Skip Bertman Field. Tomorrow’s game will start at 2 p.m. and Sunday’s at noon. None of the games will appear on network television. Tonight’s and Sunday’s games can be heard on affiliates of the LSU Sports Radio Network, including flagship WDGL 98.1 FM in Baton Rouge. Saturday’s game can be heard in Baton Rouge only on WTGE 100.7 FM. Live video, audio and stats of all three games may be accessed in the Geaux Zone at www.LSUsports.net.
Tonights’s game will be the season opener for Yale who went 13-24 overall last season and 10-10 in the Ivy League. During Coach Paul Mainieri’s tenure as LSU coach, the Tigers have played an Ivy League school in each of the past five seasons. In that period, the Tigers are 2-0 vs. Harvard, 4-0 vs. Brown, 2-1 vs. Princeton and 3-0 vs. Dartmouth.
Coach Mainieri has said that junior right-hander Aaron Nola (2-0) will start tonight’s game on the mound for the Tigers, followed by junior left-hander Kyle Bouman (2-0) on Saturday and junior left-hander Cody Glenn (1-1) on Sunday. Mainieri decided to wait and start freshman left-hander Jared Poché in LSU’s midweek game against Northwestern State in Natchitoches in order to give him some road experience before the start of SEC play. You may recall that he did the same thing with Nola in 2012 and it seemed to work out very well. As for the rest of the starting lineup, it appears that Coach Mainieri has decided to stick with Kramer Robinson at second (at least for tonight) and give Connor Hale, the team’s leading hitter with a batting average of .417, a look at first base. Chris Chinea is expected to start behind the plate tonight tonight, but we’ll probably see at least two of the three catchers behind the plate this weekend.
In football news, LSU finally made the hiring of Bradley Dale Peveto as special teams coach official yesterday by releasing the following press release:
PEVETO RETURNS TO LSU AS SPECIAL TEAMS COORDINATOR
BATON ROUGE – Bradley Dale Peveto, who was a member of the LSU coaching staff during its run to the 2007 national title, returns to the program as special teams coordinator and defensive assistant, head coach Les Miles officially announced on Thursday.
Peveto joins the LSU staff after serving as the special teams coordinator and safeties coach for Kentucky in 2013. Prior to that, Peveto was the head coach at Northwestern State University for four years.
“It’s great to have Bradley Dale back at LSU,” Miles said. “He has great experience in both special teams and on defense. He was part of our 2007 national championship team so he understands and knows what it takes to win at the highest level.
”Bradley Dale is also an outstanding recruiter. His ties to Texas along with the success he’s had recruiting Georgia will be a benefit to our program.”
Peveto was a member of Miles’ first staff at LSU as he joined the Tigers originally in the spring of 2005 as special teams coordinator and linebackers coach. He remained in that position until the 2008 season when he was promoted to co-defensive coordinator. LSU went a combined 40-11 during Peveto’s first stint with the Tigers.
Peveto left LSU following the 2008 season to become the head coach at Northwestern State, where he posted a 14-30 mark in four seasons from 2009-12 with the Demons.
“It’s great to be back at LSU, which I consider the best college football job in the country,” Peveto said. “It’s great to be home. I have a lot of respect for coach Miles and the great job that he’s done here. I love the state of Louisiana, the people, the culture and the tradition of LSU football. I’m honored to be back here to be part of a place with such a wonderful tradition.”
In his previous stay on the staff with the Tigers, Peveto's development of linebackers was critical to the LSU defense rating among the top five in the nation in for three straight years from 2005-07. During that three-year stretch, the LSU defense held opponents to average of 266.7 total yards and 15.7 points per game.
In 2007, linebacker Ali Highsmith earned first-team All-America honors from CBSsports.com, while also being named a second-team All-American by the Associated Press.
As LSU’s special teams coordinator from 2005-07, Peveto had both his punter (Patrick Fisher) and placekicker (Colt David) earn first-team All-SEC honors in 2007. It marked the first time in school history that LSU had the All-SEC punter and kicker on its roster in the same season. Fisher averaged a league-best 44.5 yards per punt in 2007, while David kicked a school-record 26 field goals and led the SEC in scoring with a league record 147 total points.
LSU scored seven special teams touchdowns - three coming on punt returns - during Peveto’s three previous years as special teams coordinator. LSU also blocked six kicks during that span.
Peveto is a 1987 graduate of SMU, where he helped the Mustangs to two Southwest Conference Championships in 1982 and 1984 and an overall record of 43-14-1.
Peveto comes from a family with a rich football coaching tradition. His late father, Ed, coached high school football in the southeast Texas area and was inducted into the Greater Houston Hall of Fame.
As for football recruiting news, the staff has been in high gear lately and has offered several prospects for the class of 2015 and beyond this week. In fact, just on Wednesday alone I counted nine tweets indicating new offers, and there were several more yesterday. You can check out a full list of all 101, yes 101, players that have been offered by LSU for the class of 2015 on 247Sports.com. (I think that’s a new feature of 247’s website, at least it’s new to me, and it’s a great way to keep track of who LSU is after.) I know a lot of you will ask how LSU can possibly extend that many offers with a 25-max signing rule, but that’s just the way it works. And LSU is certainly not alone in this. You can see from the same site that Alabama, for example, has already offered 145 prospects. Of course, almost all of the offers are not of the “fully committable” type, but rather are contingent on certain conditions being met and on numbers working out. Recruiting is a crazy, complicated, never-ending game, and I guess that’s what makes it so much fun to follow, especially at this time of the year when there’s not much else going on in football.
In exactly one week (March 7), there will be a lot of football news coming our way as LSU will begin Spring Practice, and I can hardly wait. To help feed your football craving between now and then, Monday we’ll begin a series taking a look at five players who have somewhat flown under the radar but should make a big impact this year. Stay tuned.
One more football tid-bit that I forgot to mention yesterday: LSU has announced that former NFL great and current ESPN analyst Ray Lewis will be the headline speaker at this year’s LSU Football Coaches Clinic, which will be held at the PMAC on March 27-29. In addition to Lewis, this year’s LSU Football Coaches Clinic will feature New Orleans Saints defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, Oakland Raiders special teams coordinator Bobby April and quarterback coaching guru George Whitfield. The clinic will give participants an opportunity to see the Tigers practice on Thursday, March 27 and then watch an LSU scrimmage on Saturday, March 29 in Tiger Stadium. There will also be a barbeque social and a crawfish boil for the coaches. For more information on this year’s LSU Football Coaches Clinic visit www.lsucamp.com or call the LSU Football Office at 225.578.1151.
Last but not least, LSU’s Lady Tigers nearly staged an epic comeback last night against No. 10 Tennessee but fell short, 72-67. LSU trailed by 21 at the break but rallied in the second half to tie the game at 59-59 at the 3:28 mark, but Tennessee (23-5, 12-3 SEC) knocked down critical buckets followed by late game free throws to tuck away the five-point win. For more on the game, which marked the final regular season home game and Senior Night for Jeanne Kenney, Shanece McKinney and Theresa Plaisance, please see this article on LSUSports.net.
Reader Comments: Good article to share: Receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry bring new level of LSU excellence to draft
2/27/14 5:35 am CT
Good morning, Tiger Fans,
The LSU basketball team got back on the winning track last night with a much-needed 68-49 dominating win over Texas A&M. LSU started slow and trailed 15-7 before going on a their longest run of the season, a 21-0 spurt that spanned almost ten minutes and put them up 26-15 with 3:32 to play in the half. Texas A&M answered with a 7-0 run, and then the two teams traded points before heading into the break with the Tigers leading 30-24. LSU never trailed in the second half and led by 12 with 11:30 to go, thanks to the stellar play of Jerrall Martin who scored nine consecutive Tiger points. The Tigers would go on to steadily increase the lead to 21 points, 60-39, with 4:31 remaining, and from that point on the game was never in question, even with LSU substituting liberally.
The Tigers were led in scoring by Jarrell Martin who accounted for a career-high-matching 20 points. Johnny O’Bryant III came one rebound short of a double-double with 15 points and nine rebounds. Andre Stringer chipped in 11 points while Jordan Mickey hosted another LSU block party with an incredible five blocked shots. The 49 points allowed by LSU marked the Tigers best defensive effort of the season.
If the Tigers win two of their final three regular season games and make it to the final round of the SEC tournament, they could still make it to the big dance, but that would be quite a feat. The Tigers have the talent to do it, but would have to play better on the road than they have so far this season. The journey continues this Saturday with a road contest against the No. 1 Florida Gators.
Turning to baseball, yesterday I heard from a few of you who are are concerned with LSU’s hitting. A couple of folks even suggested that LSU “still” has a hitting problem, implying that LSU had a problem with hitting last year. While there’s no doubt that LSU’s hitting isn’t what it used to be in the days of Gorilla Ball, I want to point out that LSU won an unprecedented 57 games last season, and that through the first eight games of this season LSU is averaging nine hits per game with a team batting average of .286. While it’s true that LSU didn’t fare well at the plate against Texas Southern (only four hits) and ULL (four hits in five innings), I am not overly concerned. At this point in the season, LSU is still doing a lot of experimenting with the lineup and batting order, and it’s simply too early to jump to any conclusions.
What I find more concerning than LSU’s hitting is their base-running. In this era of much-reduced offense, blunders on the bases are magnified and more critical than ever. The best teams maximize their fewer opportunities for run production, and that’s something LSU hasn’t done particularly well so far this season. For example, Mark Laird was thrown out at the plate vs. UNO while trying to score from third on infield ground ball. In same game, Kade Scivicque was thrown out at third with two outs on a base hit by Connor Hale (Scivicque would have scored from second on a base hit, and a runner should never be the third out at third base). Alex Bregman was thrown out at third in same scenario vs. Southeastern Louisiana, and Tuesday night Kramer Robinson was thrown out at home when he missed the signal from the third base coach and didn’t realize that the ball had not gotten out of the infield. The good news is that base-running errors are among the most correctable, and the season is early.
In football news, according to reports LSU has picked up another impressive preferred walk-on in RB Julius Maracalin (5’10”, 215) of Plaquemine High. Maracalin kind of flew under the radar after suffering an ACL injury in his junior season, even though he was among the state’s rushing leaders as a senior with over 2,000 yards rushing and 31 touchdowns. Here are Maracalin’s highlights. With players like quarterback Brandon Bergeron, kicker Kyle Pfau, and center Reid Travis, LSU has picked up quite a few very talented walk-ons this season, and that says a lot about the state of LSU’s football program.
One more football tid-bit: Some of you may be interested in knowing that, according to Jacques Doucet of WAFB, former LSU quarterback Jarrett Lee has finalized a deal with The British Columbia Lions of the CFL and is expected to compete for the backup QB spot.
In women’s basketball news, the Lady Tigers will conclude the home portion of their regular season schedule tonight when they host No. 10 Tennessee at the PMAC. Tip time is set for 8 p.m., and the game will be carried by Comcast Sports Southeast (CSS), Cox Sports Television (CST) and www.WatchESPN.com. The LSU Sports Radio Network will broadcast the game on Talk 107.3 FM in Baton Rouge and inside the Geaux Zone at www.LSUsports.net/live. As part of “Senior Night” festivities, LSU will honor Jeanne Kenney, Shanece McKinney and Theresa Plaisance along with its senior support staff members before the game. The “Senior Night” Ceremony will begin at 7:45 p.m. The first 2,500 fans will receive a commemorative poster spotlighting the 10th anniversary of the 2004 Final Four Team. I encourage those of you in the area to head out to the PMAC and have a good time supporting the program.
Reader Comments: Athlon Sports just named LSU's Leonard Fournette among our top running backs on the rise for 2014: College Football's Top 10 Running Backs on the Rise for 2014
2/26/14 5:50 am CT
Good morning, Tiger Fans,
It was great hearing from many of you about the Q&A session with Mike Detillier that I posted yesterday. Glad you enjoyed it. If you missed it, you can check it by clicking the link above, or by scrolling down to the links in yesterday’s report.
LSU (7-1) suffered its first defeat of the season in baseball last night as the Tigers lost 4-1 to UL-Lafayette in a game that was called due to rain in the 6th inning. Because the game was a non-conference match, it only had to make it through five innings to count. The loss ended LSU’s 34-game win streak in regular-season mid-week games and its 32-game win streak against Louisiana schools. The Tigers’ last loss in both categories came to Northwestern State on April 15, 2011, in Alex Box Stadium.
Cody Glenn got the start for the Tigers and threw four innings, allowing three earned runs on five hits while walking one and striking out one. Alden Cartwright pitched one and one-third innings, allowing one run on one hit with one strikeout and one walk. Zac Person had just come in and was facing his first batter when the game was called.
Here’s how it played out: The Cajuns got on the board with two runs in the top of the third on a walk, an RBI triple and a sacrifice fly. LSU threatened in the bottom of the third after freshman Kramer Robertson was hit by a pitch and advanced to second on a wild pitch, but with two outs, Laird singled to the shortstop and Robertson made a critical base-running error and was thrown out at home plate. ULL added another run in the top of the fourth with a single, a sac bunt, a fly out to center field, and an RBI single. LSU’s only run of the night came in the fifth when Andrew Stevenson led with a well-hit triple and Tyler Moore followed with a sac fly. In the top of the sixth, ULL added another run with a single and a fielding error by Kramer Robertson.
While LSU didn’t play their best and committed two errors on defense and one on the bases, I have to credit UL-Lafayette (8-1) for playing exceptionally well. Not only did they swing the bat with authority, they also ran the bases very aggressively and played error-free ball. I would have loved to have seen the game play out for nine innings, but the Cajuns won fair and square and in impressive manner. I have a feeling both of these teams will go far in post season play, and that’s good for the state of Louisiana.
The LSU men’s basketball team (16-10, 7-7) will rematch the Texas A&M Aggies (16-11, 7-7) tonight in the PMAC at 7 p.m. on SECTV. The Tigers allowed the Aggies to score 83 in College Station two weeks ago in a Texas A&M win, which happened to be the third most points produced by Texas A&M this season. Defense, or rather the lack thereof, has been something that’s plagued the Tigers all season long, and unfortunately it has led to LSU falling out of serious contention for the No. 11 seed in the NCAA tournament.
Obviously, an NCAA tournament berth remains alive if LSU wins the SEC tournament, and though that’s unlikely to happen, LSU can still end this season positively. LSU’s young freshmen have an opportunity to gain tremendous experience by playing the No. 1 team in the country, Florida, next weekend and with a few wins down the stretch, the Tigers can earn an NIT bid. Experience is what allowed LSU to nearly upset Kentucky in Rupp Arena last weekend, and with this being the deepest NBA draft in recent memory, it’s likely LSU could retain all of its talented players. We all saw how Johnny O’Bryant and Anthony Hickey grew as basketball players with extra time. Imagine what Jordan Mickey and Jarrell Martin could do if they return alongside these veterans next season.
A couple of football tid-bits in closing:
• The NFL combine came to a close yesterday. For a comprehensive view of how each former Tiger performed on the various drills, check out this page on NFL.com, and here’s a good read by the LSU Reveille called, “LSU at the combine: The good, the bad and the ugly”â€¨
• If you’re one of the many people who emailed me Sunday and Monday about LSU picking up a commitment from a 14-year-old 8th grader who has never even played a down of high school football (quarterback Zadock Dinkelmann), you’ll probably enjoy reading the humorous article by Ron Higgens of nola.com: We interrupt nap time to announce LSU's newest 'recruit'
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