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July 22, 2011

LSU Week In Review with Links

LSU Tight End - Deangelo Peterson
It has been pointed out that the biggest individual benefactor from the addition of LSU's new offensive coordinator may be LSU tight end Deangelo Peterson and Oregon bloggers are aware of this possibility.  Kris Brauner, author of the LSU blog Saturday Night Slant, made a solid case in a recent article for a Kragthorpe offense that may very well feature many more passes being thrown to Deangelo Peterson.  Oregon blogger Dale Newton, The Duck Stops Here, has also taken note of Peterson's potential in an article: "A Matchup to Watch in the Oregon-LSU Game".  Brauner and Newton are stars of the Bloguin Sports Blog network and the ideas in both articles are definitely worth strong consideration.  I think LSU fans first really saw the potential of Deangelo Peterson the last time the Tigers played Alabama in an away game two years ago but most of the nation became aware of Peterson in the LSU-Alabama game this year when Peterson took a 4th-and-1 handoff for 23 yards and nearly scored a touchdown.  The reverse 4th-and-1 play followed Les Miles now famous grass chewing incident.  There is a great story around Peterson as a New Orleans native who road out and survived Hurricane Katrina that marked Les Miles 1st season as LSU's head coach and even if there was not that human interest story, Peterson has all the tools of a future Hall of Fame caliber NFL wide receiver or tight end.  It would be unwise for any team to overlook Peterson as a potential offensive threat.  I believe Nick Saban will confirm that should there be any doubt. 

Willie Lyles
I have said all that I want to about Willie Lyles and LSU.  This nonsense that ESPN has perpetuated about the videos not being very worthwhile is not worth a second thought.  I included a link to ESPN in the previous sentence only for those that are not aware of the content of the ESPN nonsense.  I am not irritated with ESPN for the articles. Sports fans want to know about Lyles and LSU and ESPN is in the sports information business.  I am satisfied that LSU has been wise in their dealings with sports recruiters in the past year.  Remember LSU just self-reported and self-sanctioned two years ago because of inappropriate recruiting practices surrounding Akiem Hicks.  Hicks did not play a single down at LSU and the coach involved, D.J. McCarthy, resigned.   Edit:  If you want a quick clear explanation of why LSU need not worry about Lyles and why (on second thought) ESPN may have done LSU a disservice with a story that had more negative hype than real incriminating content, follow this link to an article from Saturday Night Slant. 

Unfortunately, Oregon still has much more Lyles drama to endure.  The best article I have read from an Oregon source concerning Lyles is once again from The Duck Stops Here author Dale Newton.  While there are several good Oregon Duck writers, Dale is right up there with the best of them.

LSU-Oregon game to become a test of strength!
Every single comment made on every single article I write is emailed to me which allows me to delete inappropriate comments.  I rarely delete comments but, I do read most of the comments and some comments inspire me to do a little research and share my findings with you.  Here is an excerpt of a  comment from an Oregon fan that made me stop and do a few seconds of research that you may find of interest:

"In the end, I don't think you guys are going to have the advantage you think you have. One thing you have to remember is that strategy and speed can counter physical desparities. I don't contend that LSU and the SEC has superior physical abilities. But this is not a weight lifting competition. If it was, then you guys would win. But it's not. GO DUCKS!!"
I know that both LSU and Oregon have outstanding strength training programs so, I was not entirely sure that this commentor's assertion that "LSU would win a weight lifting competition" was true.  As it turns out I have found some evidence that the Duck fan knows what he is talking about.

As it turns out LSU strength training coach Tommy Moffitt recently posted a picture on Twitter that included a partial list of LSU football player's squat lift totals. (Here is a link/article from BR Morning Advocate)  According to the pic LSU has 18 players that can squat over 500lbs.  LSU running back Michael Ford and middle linebacker Kevin Minter are at the top of the list squatting 583lbs.  Freshman defensive tackle Anthony "Freak" Johnson and newly converted backup offensive lineman Chris Davenport each totaled 560lbs.  Four other linemen were also on the "over 500lbs" squat list.  Starting QB Jordan Jefferson did not make the list but barely missed with a total of 495lbs squatted.

After looking through some of Oregon's official records I found that starting offensive tackle Mark Asper leads all Oregon offensive linemen with a squat max of 500lbs. and Issac Remington leads all defensive linemen with a 445lbs squat. 

As an LSU fan, I am thinking that who wins the battle in the trenches has a lot to do with who has more strength but, I know that is not by far all there is to the game and this after all is not a weight lifting competition.

LSU-Oregon game noted as a "Top 10" toughest SEC game by Fox Sports Florida 
With the University of Florida, Florida State and Miami football programs concentrated all in the same state it is probably pretty hard for a college sports reporter from Florida to look very far beyond the state's borders. In his list of the Top games for the SEC in 2011 Fox Sports Florida reporter Sam Gardner includes LSU in four of the first six games on the list.  LSU vs. Oregon is the #2 top SEC game right behind Alabama-LSU.  Here is the complete list:
  1.  Alabama vs. LSU
  2.  LSU vs. Oregon
  3.  Alabama vs. Penn State
  4.  Auburn vs. Alabama
  5.  Arkansas vs. LSU
  6.  Florida vs. LSU
  7.  South Carolina vs. Georgia
  8.  Georgia vs. Boise State
  9.  Alabama vs. Arkansas
10.  Florida vs. Georgia 

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