BATON ROUGE, La. — It’s the proverbial chicken-versus-egg scenario. BYU opens its football season a week ahead of LSU, facing FCS opponent Portland State before squaring off with the Tigers in Houston on Sept. 2.
So which team has the greater advantage — the one that has a chance to work out the inevitable Game 1 kinks, or the one that can look at the tape from that game without giving away any secrets of its own?
Thanks in part to Matt Canada’s new offensive scheme, LSU coach Ed Orgeron thinks his team sits in the preferred position in this case.
“We think we have an advantage watching BYU on TV,” Orgeron said during the season premiere of the Ed Orgeron Radio Show. “They’ve run spread, run 21 personnel. We think they’ll show their hand a little bit.
“I’m glad we’re not playing first. They can study Matt Canada, but they don’t know what we’re gonna do.”
That said, Orgeron structured LSU’s preseason scrimmages — which he continually refers to as preseason games — in as game-like an atmosphere as possible knowing that BYU may have an early edge in execution.
“It works both ways. That’s why we had preseason games,” Orgeron said. “It was 96 degrees Saturday, probably 102 in the Stadium. We ran 70 plays, 1s against 1s. We made the same mistakes we’d make in the first game.”
Other Ed Orgeron Show highlights
- Orgeron said that defensive lineman Rashard Lawrence “is our best player right now on defense.” Of course, the player most would consider to be the best on LSU’s defense, Arden Key, still is not participating in full-contact drills.
- Orgeron said that defensive line coach Pete Jenkins is “76 years old, but coaching like he is 26.”
- Defensive tackle Tyler Shelvin showed up to camp at “a slim” 364 pounds. Shelvin is redshirting this season, and Orgeron wants him to drop 30 pounds by next year.
- Orgeron listed LSU’s starting free safety as Ed Paris and/or Grant Delpit.
- Of freshman offensive lineman Ed Ingram and Saadhiq Charles, Orgeron said, “I thought they would be redshirt guys. They’re looking like veterans out there. I think they’re going to be outstanding football players.”
- Orgeron listed Connor Culp and Jack Gonsulin as competing for the place kicker and kickoff specialist roles. That leaves off Cameron Gamble, who was last season’s primary kickoff man.
- Clyde Edwards-Helaire will return kickoffs and Donte Jackson will return punts.
- Orgeron continued his praise for freshman quarterback Myles Brennan, saying he is talented but not quite ready to start.
“Myles brings the skills we haven’t seen at quarterback in awhile and have been waiting for,” Orgeron said. “We have to understand he’s a young man. He’s not ready to play yet. We want him to develop on his own time and when we put him in there we want a great quarterback for LSU.”
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