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August 11, 2010

Maybe The Best Defensive Ends in College Football

The 2010 Hendricks Award Watch List was announced late Wednesday, August 11.  The Hendricks award is given to the best defensive end in college football.  This year there are 36 college defensive ends on the watch list and LSU will face five: Marcell Dareus (Alabama), Kentrell Lockett (Ole Miss), Pernell McPhee (Miss. St.), Chris Walker (Tennessee), and Robert Quinn (North Carolina).  Not a single LSU defensive end was listed among the country's top defensive ends.  Should LSU fans be concerned that there are no Hendricks watch list players from LSU this year?  It all depends on the outlook of each LSU fan but, my final answer will be: "I don't think LSU fans need to be overly concerned." and I will explain my reasoning.

Some LSU fans will point out that not having an LSU player named to the Hendricks watch list is a bad sign.  Those fans will point out that LSU does not have a defensive end on the list because LSU has no defensive ends with experience.  Or they will point out that Pep Levingston a defensive end last year was moved to defensive tackle because of a bigger need to fill in LSU's defensive interior.  Some LSU fans will simply say that because LSU's defensive line was not very good last year, there is no surprise that LSU has no Hendricks award nominee and this is just one of many red flags that point to LSU having a dismal year.  Though I understand what these LSU fans are saying, I am not one of those LSU fans.

LSU fans did not see the same defensive line dominance that they had grown accustom to in the previous years but LSU had a very strong defense anchored by a solid line.  LSU's defensive ends were not included on this year's Hendricks watch list because these types of awards rarely go to even the very best underclassmen.  Scans LSU's list of defensive ends (DE) and you will find 3 freshmen, 2 sophomores, and 1 new to LSU junior, junior college transfer.  There is one senior listed as a DE on LSU's roster but that senior has an "SQ" list next to his name under the experience column, meaning that the one senior DE is on the squad or scout team.  LSU's defensive ends may lack experience but all reports are that they are talented and fast.  In his assessment of LSU's defense in media days this week, LSU's defensive coordinator, John Chavis, was uncharacteristically over-the-top in his praise of LSU's defense this year.  Chavis stated that LSU's defensive ends had several 4.5/40 players (meaning they can run 40 yards in 4.5 seconds) which should make them faster than most college quarterbacks and even as fast as many college running backs.  That kind of speed makes several of LSU's defensive ends much faster than the offensive tackles and tight ends that will be assigned to try to block them.  While Chavis singled out one defensive tackle, Michael Brockers, as a name to remember, he listed several defensive ends that ought to perform very well for LSU this year.  Remember these names:  Ken Adams, Sam Montgomery, Barkevious Mingo, Lavar Edwards, and Chancey Aghayere. You ought to see one or more of these names on future Hendricks Award watch lists in part for his performance this season.  The one true freshman on the list, Jordan Allen, may also be on this list in the future but I exclude his name because I would bet he is redshirted this year.

According to Chavis, the 2010 LSU defense is eager to prove themselves and is probably the fastest defense that he has ever coached.  Let other defensive ends fill up the Hendricks list.  Look for the defensive ends to be in the opponents' backfield all year long.  LSU's defensive ends may be the best defensive ends in college football. 

I recommend  "LSU football is getting enthusiasm from the younger players" by Times Picayune LSU beat writer Jim Kleinpeter.  This is a great article that I know you will enjoy. 


Anonymous said...

Funny how it seems LSU gets no respect anymore.

Think it could be because when we were getting the love we had Dorsey at Tackle winning all those individual awards, Laron Landry terrorizing receivers, or maybe because we had DE's like Marcus Spears and Marquise Hill, both Parade AA's and watch list perennial occupiers.

Wonder why when we had guys like Corey Webster we had guys on watch lists... Patrick Peterson is on watch lists, and for him, well we all think thats just really a sign of our great talent in the backfield.

Used to get guys mentioned, even when they were underclassmen too. Funny how the guys we used to have seemed to have no problem being on those kinds of lists,.. If memory serves, we won our fair share of games then too.

But in the end, maybe its a good thing no one thinks much of our players at DE. Still cant figure out why though we are all so gratified that everyone thinks Peterson is the best. Seems like a contradiction. If the guys arent mentioned, thats a good thing. But if they are... well, we all just tip our hats to the wisdom displayed by the reviewers to think so much of one of our own...

Lemons, lemonaide

Anonymous said...

I guess LSU will have to earn that respect back on the field. Go Tigers!

Anonymous said...

Kyle Williams was never on one of those lists and he did a great job at LSU and is still in the NFL. In fact, he has had a better career than Dorsey.

Anonymous said...

Ken Adams is Miles Claude Wroten.

Anonymous said...

Wasn't Rahim Alem on this watch list last year?

Anonymous said...

Jerry Hughes won the Hendr awrd last year - who the heck is he?

Anonymous said...

Great Price on NCAA college football in right column!!!

Anonymous said...

At schools where winning is part of the culture, we get excited about having great talent on the field and treat our coaches like a normal family giving them the benefit of the doubt.

Anonymous said...

'Where winning is a part of the culture'..

Really, talk to Tennessee about that, they had the 'culture of winning' back around 2001... Hows that been working for them? How about the U? They had a culture of winning.

Wow, LSU has had about five great years in about the past 40, and now what... we've got a 'culture of winning' and forgive our coaches?

Seems like the places with cultures of winning have them by not forgiving their coaches. When Bear Bryant won the MNC in 78, the next year they opened with Missouri and got whipped. The next week they lost to Ole Miss. Bryant was so forgiving that nearly half his starting team quit because he was as they said 'a mad-man'.

Benefit of the doubt? Places with cultures of winning?... They dont have those doubts because they dont have the downs that LSU is going down.

People love to say Saban wasnt all perfect. True, but the trend, while with its bumps was upward. Continually upward. Great talent, more and more of it, and building a 'culture of winning'. He had his losses, but really, could you say he was causing the program harm?... or making it into what we hoped it would be.

Follow the trend. How we doing? Sure we had a peak three years ago, that was great. Hows the ride down been going?

Benefit of the doubt. Yeah, thats fine, because we have a birthright to play in big games and win BCS titles. At least since 03.

Anybody remember the 80's the ride down, then the 90's and life with 40k fans in the stands.

Sure, we have a culture of winning, we dont have to expect peformance on a daily basis, its our birthright.... (barf)... air sic bag.

MilesIsBest! said...

Come on Miles wins all of the games he is supposed to win. Before quitting LSU Saban finished by losing to Iowa and also lost to Alabama-Birmingham in his second year at LSU. He has been at Alabama only two years and won a NC with mostly Shula's recruits and didn't he lost to University of Louisiana - Monroe his first season and end up in the independence bowl?

Randy said...

Saban's Alabama is ranked #1 this year. Let's see if Bama stays there with a loss of Rolando McClain, Javier Arenas, Mount Cody, and Mike Johnson. LSU will not only beat Alabama this year they will be undefeated when the Tigers beat Bama. If they beat Bama 31-0 that will avenge the margin LSU lost by at home when Saban was LSU coach.

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