The LSU Tigers need to get back on the football field as soon as possible.
Less than 7 months from basking in the glow of the impressive win over Texas A&M in the Cotton Bowl, LSU has seen little positive publicity off-the-field.
This summer has found the players and coaches busy as usual, preparing for the season. The hiring of Steve Kragthorpe as offensive coordinator was not a negative, but there were plenty of others. The Will Lyles service payments, the sanctions from the NCAA over departed coach D.J. McCarthy and recruit Akiem Hicks and now the housing compliance issues for Russell Shepard have come as hits to the LSU program.
Les Miles was direct about his football team and evasive about the other stories at SEC Media Days. The Tigers report for preseason practice on August 3. This team needs to get on the field and get all of the focus and stories on just football. The stories are not going to disappear, but the preseason Top 5 Tigers need them to take a backseat to the game itself.
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LSU has huge expectations on the field. The fans have huge expectations as well. The media has labeled the Tigers as one of the top teams in the country. LSU is not the only team in the SEC or in the country for that matter to have distractions. Unfortunately, it would take too long to list all of the teams who have had an off-season of negative press
I am not real big into making specific predictionsâ€ but I do feel this LSU team is loaded up and has a great shot at championships. Jordan Jefferson is the key. I canâ€™t remember a year for LSU when the quarterback was not the key. Jordan has shown great potential and performed at an all-conference level at times. He has also struggled with decisions and quite frankly looked poor at times. He has an abundance of talent around him on the offense. The running game should be solid. The receiving group is a big question mark as the players available are talented yet unproven.
The other side of the ball will be very good. Defensive coordinator John Chavis has the skilled players in key positions that make his unit what it is - dynamic.
Special teams will have to produce a kicker and punter. Tyrann Mathieu will return punts, but I'm not sure about one of kickoff returner spots with senior Ron Brooks expected to return to that role.
August 4 marks the beginning of work on the unknowns and getting ready for September 3 on the road in Arlington against the mighty Oregon Ducks. Yes, the Ducks have had their share of less-that-positive stories this ofseason as well and also want to get back on the field fast. In the case of both schools, there are still many chapters to be written on who issues away from the game itself may affect them.
Hank Williams Jr. always asks, â€œAre you ready for some football?â€ Yes, I am ready blog about football â€“ on the field â€“ and it cannot get here soon enough for all involved.
Tommy Krysan is the host of â€œTigers Roarâ€ a live TV show each Wednesday night on Pelican Sports TV. He also hosts Pelican Sports Radio, Monday â€“ Friday, 3:00-4:00 pm in Baton Rouge on The Score 1210 AM.
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