• LSUBEAT.com • Schedules • Depth Chart • Recruits • LSU in NFL • LSU Gear

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Saturday reaction

So, LSU fans, what will your reaction be on Saturday night in these situations:

1) If LSU goes three-and-out on the first possession?

2) If LSU keeps passing when the run is in order?

3) If LSU mismanages the clock at the end of the first half and wastes a scoring opportunity?

I ask these questions because I have a feeling this game may be as important as any championship game for Les Miles.

No, I don't think Miles is getting fired. But I do think he turned up the heat on his own coaching seat with the debacle in Oxford last week.

It will be interesting to see how LSU comes out and plays against Arkansas. A fast start and an impressive victory and Miles will have some breathing room. Another loss and he could be next year's Mark Richt.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Worse than you might think

While much of College Football Nation either laughs or is shock at the ending of the LSU-Ole Miss game, there is something even more disturbing than the way LSU lost.

It is this: LSU needed three low-percentage plays (the onside kick, a screen pass in traffic and a Hail Mary) to even get in a position to steal the win.

Except for LSU's bungling of the final minute of the game, everyone would be talking about a defense that couldn't get off the field and an offense that continues to be the most frustrating in the country to watch because there are playmakers everywhere (Welcom Rueben Randle) and a coaching staff with no clue how to use them.

So the Ole Miss loss is really worse than you think. Because the horrific game mismanagement hides the fact that Ole Miss pretty much dominated this one.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Tennessee gaining on Gators in renegade category

By Glenn Guilbeau
Gannett Louisiana

The Guilbeau Poll

1.ALABAMA (9-0, 6-0 SEC) – Even if Patrick Peterson gets the intercepton and Charles Scott doesn't get hurt, Bama still beats LSU. But if Jordan Jefferson doesn't get hurt, LSU wins.

2.FLORIDA (9-0, 7-0) – The Gators need another player arrest to answer Tennessee's.

3.LSU (7-2, 4-2) – That Peterson no-call makes up for the Corey Webster no-call back in 2004. LSU's Webster clearly pushed an Alabama receiver down before making an interception in the end zone when Bama was threatening to score at a key point in the game. And there was no call. Saturday's game also makes up for a trio of instant replay reviews that went against Alabama in LSU's win in 2007. Forgot about those, didn't you LSU fans. Chad Jones also got away with pass interference in the first half Saturday.

4. AUBURN (7-3, 3-3) - The Tigers are ranked again and could challenge LSU for the Florida bowls.

5. TENNESSEE (5-4, 3-3) - I didn't know they still made pellet guns. This could hurt Tennessee's recruiting in more ways than one.

6. GEORGIA (5-4, 3-3) - Could the Bulldogs find themselves in Shreveport next month?

7. ARKANSAS (5-4, 2-4) - The Hogs look ready to finish strong.

8. SOUTH CAROLINA (6-4, 3-4) - Steve Spurrier Jr. is taking heat as the Gamecocks' play caller. Will his dad get all biblical on him and fire or demote him like he's some quarterback?

9. OLE MISS (6-3, 2-3) - Former Ole Miss coach Ed Orgeron returns to Oxford as Tennessee's defensive line coach. Guess what song will be playing in the Grove?

10. MISSISSIPPI STATE (4-5, 2-3) - Upset special? Alabama's coming to Starkville after a huge win, and State has been dangerous this season. The Bulldogs also beat Nick Saban and the Tide two years ago.

11. KENTUCKY (5-4, 1-4) - The Bluegrass wonders. Will a win over Vanderbilt count toward bowl eligibility?

12. VANDERBILT (2-8, 0-6) - The Commordores play Kentucky at 11:20 a.m. Saturday. Christmas shopping anyone?


No. 3 Alabama at Mississippi State, 6 p.m., ESPN - Mississippi State defeated Alabama in 2006 and 2007. The Bulldogs nearly upset LSU and Houston this season and played Georgia Tech well. The Crimson Tide may be primed for an upset. And it's worth watching just to see if the SEC officials blow another call on behalf of one the league's undefeated. Plus, can you imagine what type of instant replay equipment they must have in a pressbox in Starkville, Miss.? Perhaps a little K-Mart model with rabbit ears.


Tennessee at Ole Miss, 11 a.m., CBS.

Kentucky at Vanderbilt, 11:20 a.m., SEC Network.

No. 1 Florida at South Carolina, 2:30 p.m., CBS.

Auburn at Georgia, 6 p.m., ESPN2

Louisiana Tech (3-6) at No. 9 LSU, 6 p.m. ESPNU

Troy at Arkansas, 6:30 p.m.


Arkansas 33, South Carolina 16

Georgia 38, Tennessee Tech 0

Kentucky 37, Eastern Kentucky 12

Auburn 63, Furman 31

Alabama 24, LSU 15

Tennessee 56, Memphis 28

Florida 27, Vanderbilt 3

Ole Miss 38, Northern Arizona 14


OFFENSE - Arkansas QB Ryan Mallett completed 23 of 27 passes for 329 yards and rushed for a touchdown.

DEFENSE - Alabama CB Javier Arenas made seven tackles with four solos and two behind the line with a quarterback pressure.

SPECIAL TEAMS - Florida P Chas Henry punted four times for a 52.8-yard average.


REDEMPTION FOR JULIO: Not only was Alabama wide receiver Julio Jones the guilty party on the Tide's penalty for too many men on the field, ruining a chance for a touchdown against LSU in the third quarter. He also dropped a pass just before Bama quarterback Greg McElroy was stopped for a safety. He made up for both with his 73-yard touchdown catch and run to give Alabama a 21-15 lead in the fourth quarter after a two-point conversion.

"Their guys had been real aggressive coming up on me," Jones said.

"You never expect a short pass like that to lead to a touchdown," McElroy said. "Then again, when you get it to No. 8, you never know what'll happen. I've never seen someone run that fast before."

PASS SET UP RUN: McElroy threw 25 times in the first half for Alabama, seriously breaking a tendency. Then tailback Mark Ingram, who had only 38 yards in the first half, took over the second half with 106 yards through a spaced LSU defense often looking for more passes. Ingram finished with 144.

"It was the way we planned," Alabama coach Nick Saban said. "And I thought it worked. As the game went on, we got more and more control of the line of scrimmage."

BORDER WAR: Auburn has 20 players from the state of Georgia looking forward to Saturday's game at Georgia. There is also Auburn defensive coordinator Ted Roof, who grew up in Atlanta and played and coached at Georgia Tech.

"It makes it fun," Roof said. "It's a fun game."


The 452 yards given up by LSU to Alabama on Saturday were the most allowed by the Tigers since Florida got 475 in a 51-21 win last season.


"He was a great D-line coach, but he wasn't that great of a head coach."

- Ole Miss defensive end Kentrell Lockett on former head coach Ed Orgeron, who is Tennessee D-line coach now and returns to Oxford, Miss., Saturday.

- Compiled by Glenn Guilbeau with other SEC writers.


Friday, November 13, 2009

Why Not Start Shepard at QB?

BATON ROUGE - Sorry, I have not blogged in a while, but I got a stomach flu early this week. The doctor said that is going around and I caught it from another person, but I'm convinced I got it from overexposure to SEC officiating - the laughing stock of the country - and LSU's offense - the most poorly drilled offense in the country.

LSU's offense, which by the way is ranked 103rd in the nation and No. 1 in poorest use of talent, begs the following question. How many false-start penalties would it have if it didn't have so many pre-start penalties?


And how many LSU tight ends does it take to line up in one space? Common sense says one. LSU says two.

Interestingly, LSU's offense is still so skill talented and capable of amazing things. Things such as having too many men on the field after a timeout.

Here's another one. On a third quarter drive, LSU called more timeouts (2) than it gained yards (0) on three plays of that drive.

Apparently, I'm not the only one nauseated. Former LSU nose guard Greg Bowser, who is the best analyst on television not doing live football, said during the second half of the CST replay of the LSU-Alabama game that the main difference in the game since halftime was one thing - the sideline. Alabama's was working, and LSU's wasn't.

At any rate, on to today's topic.

LSU quarterback Jordan Jefferson would likely start and play Saturday if the Tigers were not playing a 24-point underdog like 3-6 Louisiana Tech. Jefferson hurt his ankle in the loss to Alabama last Saturday on one of the 24 sacks he has suffered this season. He was on crutches part of the time early in the week before returning to practice on Wednesday. Some say Jefferson holds the ball too long. Maybe he's just choosing which defensive end he's going to get creamed by.

LSU should be able to handle Tech, which does not have the same firepower passing game that Troy had the week after an emotional LSU loss to Alabama a year ago. LSU's defense is also twice as good as the outfit of last season. LSU should be able to run well against Tech provided its coaches can get the plays to their players before two seconds remain on the play clock. So, it would be wise to sit Jefferson out and get him absolutely ready for next week's game at Ole Miss, which is very capable of beating LSU. Rebels' coach Houston Nutt has won his last two against LSU with less talent.

So, word is Jarrett Lee will likely start against Tech. I saw enough of Lee last season and more than enough last week. LSU should give Russell Shepard the chance he deserves. LSU should start Shepard at quarterback Saturday. He can't be any worse than Lee, who got more and more nervous and tentative as the game went on last week. The officials had to pick up a pass interference call against Alabama because Lee's subsequent pass was so uncatchable. He threw one interception and could have thrown two more. He struggled with the play clock and play calling management, which qualifies him for a job on LSU's offensive staff, not quarterback.

But Lee's biggest problem is he cannot run well, and with the way LSU's offensive line has performed this season, that is a prerequisite.

Shepard can run and gain yards whether there is blocking or not. And this would be the opportunity to let him pass some, too.

Shepard has struggled to learn LSU's playbook, but in college football that is the coaches' responsibility. If he is struggling, just teach him a handful of plays. LSU hasn't got past the first two pages of its playbook in most games this season anyway. How about just a few plays this week, coaches? And here's another hint. It's better to call plays than timeouts.
LSU's coaches have had all spring, all August and all season to get Shepard ready. And this week, they had more time than usual with Jefferson out. Hope they didn't waste it trying to get Lee ready. They tried that last season and it didn't work.
Lee is a great kid and has showed toughness in sticking around. But how many chances does he get? It's somebody else's turn. That should be Shepard with some series by Lee in between for good measure.
And remember if 11 players are on the field and another runs on with nobody coming out, then you have 12 players on the field.


Monday, November 09, 2009

What defines success?

Here is a food-for-thought question for LSU fans?

If LSU ends the regular season 10-2 -- and that is a big if with Ole Miss and Arkansas still remaining on the SEC schedule -- do you consider it a successful season?

Granted 10 years ago at this time LSU fans would have walked on hot coals for a 10-2 season.

But 10 years later, do losses at home to Florida and on the road at Alabama -- the two biggest games of the season -- alter the way the season is viewed?

Does a second-place finish in the West, even if it comes in a 10-win season, sit well with folks after the greatest decade in school history?

I'd be interested to hear what folks think.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Alabama playing to save history against LSU

The Guilbeau Poll

1.ALABAMA (8-0, 5-0 SEC) – If Alabama loses to LSU, one of the most impressive streaks in the history of SEC football will be jeopardy. The Crimson Tide has won at least one SEC football championship in every decade since the league's inception in 1933. If it loses to LSU, LSU will have the head-to-head tiebreaker with two games remaining. This is the last year of the current decade. Alabama, which has won 21 SEC titles won at least one in the 1930s, '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s and '90s.

2.FLORIDA (8-0, 6-0) – With Florida coach Urban Meyer getting fined $30,000 for criticizing officials by the SEC, who's going to bail the Gators out of jail this weekend?

3.LSU (7-1, 4-1 SEC) – If Jordan Jefferson can pull a JaMarcus Russell (the college version) or a Matt Flynn (also the college version), LSU could win in Tuscaloosa and make Miles the man again.

4. AUBURN (6-3, 3-3 SEC) - Ranking the bottom nine of this league is like ranking the ACC.

5. TENNESSEE (4-4, 2-3 SEC) - Just when you thought Lane Kiffin was going to get fined, Florida's Meyer beat him again.

6. GEORGIA (4-3, 3-2 SEC) - The Bulldogs could be looking at their first season with less than eight wins since 1996. But first they must look at a Tennessee Tech team (5-3) that has a better record than they do.

7. SOUTH CAROLINA (6-3, 3-3) - Steve Spurrier sure misses Phillip Fulmer.

8. OLE MISS (5-3, 2-3) - The Rebels allowed 23 points in the third quarter at Auburn. In no previous game this season, had they given up that much in four quarters.

9. ARKANSAS (4-4, 1-4) - Razorback Security better make sure Spurrier doesn't kidnap Hog quarterback Ryan Mallett. Spurrier hasn't seen a quarterback since he had Rex Grossman.

10. MISSISSIPPI STATE (4-5, 2-3) - Old habits die hard. State beat Kentucky 31-24 last week, but the weekly SEC release has State losing to Kentucky on the schedule/results page.

11. KENTUCKY (4-4, 1-4) - The Wildcats allowed 252 yards rushing to State tailback Anthony Dixon.

12. VANDERBILT (2-7, 0-5) - There will be no bowl this year.


No. 9 LSU at No. 3 Alabama, 2:30 p.m., CBS - This is definitely not sweeps weekend for the new SEC television contracts. Wake up to South Carolina at Arkansas, then watch this one and call it a day. Look for an early bad call against the Crimson Tide. The SEC office got Florida out of the way early on Friday with a fine of coach Urban Meyer. Now if it pops Alabama for something, nobody can say the league wants a Bama-Gator SEC Championship Game, right? LSU has the talent, and Les Miles has the big-game coaching prowess to pull a classic upset.


South Carolina at Arkansas, 11:21 a.m., SEC Network.

Tennessee Tech (5-3) at Georgia, noon, ESPN GamePlan.

Eastern Kentucky (5-3) at Kentucky, noon, ESPN GamePlan.

Furman (4-4) at Auburn, 12:30 p.m., ESPN GamePlan.

Memphis (2-6) at Tennessee, 6 p.m., ESPNU.

Vanderbilt at No. 1 Florida, 6:15 p.m., ESPN2.

Northern Arizona (5-3) at Ole Miss, ESPN GamePlan.


Auburn 33, ole Miss 20

Florida 41, Georgia 17

Arkansas 63, Eastern Michigan 27

Mississippi State 31, Kentucky 24

Georgia Tech 56, Vanderbilt 31

Tennessee 31, South Carolina 13

LSU 42, Tulane 0


OFFENSE - Mississippi State TB Antony Dixon, who gained a school record 252 yards.

DEFENSE - Auburn DB Walt McFadden, who intercepted two passes and made five tackles.

SPECIAL TEAMS - Florida K Caleb Sturgis made 56- and 44-yard field goals.


SEC COPS STRIKE AGAIN: On Friday, the SEC office made history by fining Florida coach Urban Meyer $30,000 for his public comments concerning officiating, Commissioner Mike Slive announced.

The SEC has never fined coaches for criticizing officials.

"Coach Meyer has violated the Southeastern Conference Code of Ethics,” Slive said. “SEC Bylaw 10.5.4 clearly states that the coaches, players and support personnel shall refrain from public criticism of officials. The league’s Athletics Directors and Presidents and Chancellors have made it clear that negative public comments on officiating are not acceptable.”

The SEC warned in recent weeks that fines could possibly be coming. The league office previously reprimanded Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino, Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin and Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen for criticizing officials.


The number of SEC coaches reprimanded and/or fined by the league office this season is gaining on the number of present and/or former SEC coaches in the movie "The Blind Side." The movie leads so far, 5-4.


"I would like to apologize to my team and the coaching staff and Washaun Ealey. Football is a very physical and emotional game, but there is no excuse for my actions."

- Florida linebacker Brandon Spikes' written apology about trying to gouge at Ealey's eyes after a play last week. Spikes was suspended for the first half of Florida's game against Vanderbilt, but he said later he would not play at all in the game so as not to be a distraction.

- Compiled by Glenn Guilbeau with other SEC writers.