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

Friday, November 05, 2010

LSU has the exact record that Alabama has, so why doesn’t it feel like it?

BATON ROUGE – It’s right there in black and white, but most see only crimson and white. LSU is 7-1 on the season and 4-1 in the SEC. Alabama is 7-1 on the season and 4-1 in the SEC.

Yet few, including those most rabid and self-absorbed LSU fans, are talking about the Tigers running the table and getting into the BCS national championship game, while many are saying that the Crimson Tide can do that as if it is a foregone conclusion.

“Of course, that sounds about right,” Georgia-born LSU middle linebacker Kelvin Sheppard said with the sarcasm of a veteran LSU fan who saw the Tigers go 8-27-1 against Bama from 1964-99 while the Tide won half a dozen national championships over that span.

“That’s how it always is,” Sheppard said. “We’re used to that by now. I enjoy it. I just laugh at it, because we’re in the same position as Alabama as I see it. We’re both equal going into this game.”

On paper, LSU is equal to Alabama. In the human polls, though, Alabama is No. 5 to LSU’s No. 11 or 12. Even in BCS standings, which use cold hard computer facts, Alabama is No. 6 to LSU’s No. 10. Yet, LSU’s lone loss this season – to an undefeated, now-No. 2-ranked Auburn and the best player in the country by a touchdown on the road – is better than Alabama’s loss, which was to a now-No. 19 ranked, 6-2 South Carolina team by two touchdowns. South Carolina also lost to 1-5 Kentucky.

Alabama has so much more reputation and credibility than LSU at the moment, it’s not even funny. LSU, which in the past tended to be the highest ranked one- or two-loss team in the nation and often overrated, is No. 6 in the nation among 7-1 teams at the moment in both the Associated Press and Harris polls. This is a program that somehow got into the BCS national title game just three seasons ago with two losses.

It has one loss this season and can’t even get in the conversation.

This is because many across the nation realize that LSU could easily be 5-3 or even 4-4 right now, and its best win is over a Florida team now just holding on at 5-3 and 3-3.

But what if LSU wins today? Has anyone considered that? LSU would still need Georgia and Alabama to beat Auburn to get to the SEC title game, but it would be within range of a BCS bowl without a trip to Atlanta.

Yet many LSU fans do not seem to really believe a win over Bama today may actually happen. Many LSU fans do not even seem to hate Alabama coach Nick Saban as much anymore either. This has been the deadest Bama week since Dubose was its coach. Has LSU fans’ hatred of their former coach been trumped by their aggravation, apathy and lack of confidence in their present coach? It seems like it.

The fantasy is gone. Surely even the most delusional LSU fan does not still believe that Les Miles is as good or better than Saban as so many so fervently did back in 2007, or convinced themselves to feel that way out of revenge.

The funny thing is LSU has a better chance of beating Alabama today than it did in either 2008 or 2009 when more of its fan base believed it had a real chance, and it nearly did each time. Ah, ’08 and ’09 -the hallucinatory drugs of ’07’s national title that cast Miles as a genius had not yet worn off. Everyone is seeing clearly now, and Miles has transformed from daring gambler to degenerate clocker.

But he could win today. LSU is better this season than it was in either 2008 or 2009 and nearly beat Alabama in those seasons. And Alabama is not as good on defense now as it was a season ago.

Yes, LSU has a terrible pass offense, but at least it knows it. Miles and offensive coordinator Gary Crowton refused to see it in ’08. The ’07 drugs were still working, and quarterback Jarrett Lee was allowed to throw 34 times (with only 13 completions) even though he entered the game with nine interceptions and five pick sixes. He threw four interceptions and one pick six in a 27-21 overtime loss that LSU could have won with its defense and its running game. LSU can beat Alabama today with its defense and its running game and just 15 or so passes. But I do not have the confidence to make that pick either.

PREDICTION: Alabama 23, LSU 10.

1.A START FOR JARRETT LEE – If I keep saying it, maybe it will happen. If Miles and Crowton did decide to start Lee, they would not announce it publicly anyway. So, today is as good as any, considering the extra week to prepare Lee. He deserves it, and everyone deserves to see if Lee can improve and gain rhythm by staying in possession after possession. No one will know until they try it.

2.NEW PASS PLAYS – Crowton said he used the extra week to put in some new things.

3.CRAMPS – A heat cramp suffered by LSU cornerback Patrick Peterson basically cost the Tigers the game last season as Bama wide receiver Julio Jones beat Peterson’s last second replacement – Brandon Taylor – for a 73-yard touchdown on a short pass. It’s supposed to be in the 60s and 50s today. Forget the Wheaties, Patrick, drink your water. There’s an Evian endorsement deal just waiting.

4.D.J. FLUKER – The 6-foot-6, 303-pound Alabama right tackle can dominate a game. LSU has to get some Marcus Spears-like defensive end play from Lavar Edwards or Kendrick Adams or Barkevious Mingo to take some of the pressure off defensive tackle Drake Nevis.

5.NICK SABAN – He is 2-1 against LSU as Bama’s coach, but the Tide has yet to play a complete game against LSU, which has handed him the last two. Alabama may need a complete game today to win. Or has it already won?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes,I think you have the Les Miles LSU football program in the right light.
Les Miles has lost the Saban vs Miles match up.
In all likelihood, Bama will beat LSU in tiger stadium,because Les Miles is simply not good enough.
After three years, waiting for Les Miles to play a good QB- has told ebery LSU tiger fan, that something is very wrong.
I think this is the start, of the end.Times up!!!

1:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a very good post, about this year LSU football team,Glenn.
I agree with every thing you said,a very big difference, between Alabama,LSU,now.
The cat is out of the bag,Les Miles has not what the LSU football team was hoping for.
He can't seem to be able to keep up with Saban,Meyer,and the other, good coaches in this SEC.

4:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great day in the morning!!!!
LSU-24 vs Alabama-21 Final.
Nick Saban loses to Les Mikes.
People do not know how to see
the future...The LSU tigers win.

1:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

LSU wins it,Les Miles out coached Nick Saban.
Talk is cheep!!!

1:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
Volleyed and Thundered:
Stormed at with shot and shell,
Boldly they road and well,
Into the jaws of death,
Into the mouth of Hell

LSU,our young tigers, lead by Les Miles, never played more proudly and brave.
We salute them they are now a team to remember.

LSU-24 Vs Alabama-21 (Final Score)


5:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Winning,give me a clear view into
the young faces, playing football for LSU.
LSU football fans, were talking rough, and rude, about the way Les Miles coached.
And some of the LSU fans, even talked ugly, about the LSU QB's.
Now, those same LSU fans, wan't to praise them,and tell everyone now, how wonderful they(the LSU plays) are.
Well,I to, had a lot of dough about this team.
I just could not believe that Les Miles, could out coach Nick Saban.And I never though,that this tiger team, could out play the Alabama players.This team beat Bama anyway.
To every LSU fans delight,this years LSU football team is now 8-1.
With the bravery of this LSU team fighting spirit,I feel like we will have a very good LSU football season.Thank you tigers.I am very happy.You can really feel proud of your self's.

4:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now,the talk of the town,is Les Miles,not Nick Saban.

1:49 PM  
Blogger Wings Like Eagles.... said...

It's almost a week since this post [as I write this, it's Thursday 11/11/2010] and we all now know that LSU did indeed BEAT Bama in Tiger Stadium. Les Miles simply outcoached Nick Saban. I watched the entire game live and have seen the CBS College Sports replay of parts of the game 3 times. Les had the audacity to do the reverse on 4th and 1 - that Bama was not expecting; we also have a punter who can run [Derek Helton] so Les showed some guts and let Derek fake it and run for 29 yards. Josh messed that up after the play - costing us 15 of the 29 yards due to an unnecessary hit on a Bama player - but still we played "keep away" as in keeping the ball away from Bama with those plays and took time off of the clock, so Greg McElroy wouldn't have time to do some of the things he's capable of.

I think LSU played quite well and much better against Bama than in previous games this season. Now that the offense and defense clicked against Bama we just need to keep it going against ULM, Ole Miss and Arkansas.

Geaux Tigers!!!!

7:46 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home