LSU wrapped up spring practice today when they went through their annual spring game. The LSU squad was divided up by Purple and White, with the White team holding most of the first-teamers and coming out of the game with a 37-0 victory. The story of the day was the offense that was put on display by the first-team.
The game was very anticipated as fans hoped to catch a glimpse of the revamped offense of Cam Cameron that the Tigers were busy installing for most of the spring. In terms of what was seen today, it may not have been much of the new playbook, but it should have been enough to get Tiger fans excited about the 2013 season. LSU coach Les Miles was very pleased with what he saw today from a number of his players, some young and some veteran.
“It was a very competitive go,” said Miles. “I liked us today. I think we are improved and our quarterback play is very much improved. We had about four or five starters missing from offense and defense. I think we improved our depth today. On defense, we tackled crisply.”
As was mentioned, the LSU offense was the storyline of the day. Quarterback Zach Mettenberger had a very good day while only playing in the first half. He completed 12-19 passes for 236 yards and two touchdowns, including a 79-yard strike to Odell Beckham, Jr. Stephen Rivers, another member of the white squad, played the second half and completed 7-10 passes for 185 yards and two touchdowns, including a 45-yard touchdown to Travin Dural.
Both quarterbacks were very efficient throughout the game. According to Mettenberger, the coaches just let him go out and play his game, which included allowing the senior to call his own plays from the very first snap.
“I just had to get going and feel out the defense to figure out what plays to call,” said Mettenberger. “I consulted with my teammates throughout the game about what plays they wanted to run so that I could get the ball in the playmakers hands and give them the best chance to produce. It worked out pretty well.”
Junior Odell Beckham, Jr. had the best day among the receivers as he collected six passes for 202 yards and two touchdowns. He credited the play of the quarterbacks and the play calling for his success today.
“We built a chemistry and a bond that was evident today,” said Beckham, Jr. “It will be something to watch for this year with how our offense performed today. Zach played great and I think he will carry it over to the fall.”
Junior Jarvis Landry wasn’t far behind Beckham, Jr. in terms of production today. Landry hauled in six passes as well for 132 yards today. From what he saw today during the game, Landry is very excited about what the LSU offense will be able to do in the upcoming season.
“We did a lot of things really well today,” said Landry. “We ran the ball well and we let Zach [Mettenberger] call his own plays and rely on himself. He got the ball to me and Odell. Coach Cam [Cameron] took the reigns off of him and let him play his game.I think our offense is going to be amazing this season. That’s what I learned today.”
Aside from Mettenberger, perhaps one of the most anticipated storylines of the game was how freshman Anthony Jennings would perform against the first-team LSU defense. Jennings finished the day by going 8-21 for 98 yards. He also carried seven times for 26 yards.
While he didn’t have quite the day that Mettenberger did, he still showed some things that proved to Landry that Jennings would play this season.
“I think he is making a move to backup,” said Landry. “He has been very effective all spring and he is a very quick learner. He has natural ability and he will play a lot this season.”
With the passing attack generating so much buzz throughout the game, the LSU rushing attack was somewhat lost in the shuffle. However, it was still very productive.
Sophomore Jeremy Hill gained 102 yards on 13 carries in the game to lead the White team on the ground. Junior Terrence Magee, playing for the Purple team, picked up 61 yards on seven carries. J.C. Copeland also added a touchdown on the ground for the White team.
On defense, end Danielle Hunter collected two sacks on the day, with Ego Ferguson and Jordan Allen each contributing .5 sacks to the equation. On the Purple squad, freshman Christian Lacouture had one sack, with Quentin Thomas and Ronnie Feist each adding .5 sacks.
Following the game Les Miles explained that he is very satisfied with where his team is following the spring. With the addition of the remainder of the 2013 signing class this summer, Miles has very high expectations for this fall.
“I like where we are right now with the throwing game and everything. I think if you add the freshmen class to this team, we will be ready to play.”
For more on the game, click the link below to head over to the TSD message board to discuss what stood out today.
Spring Game Notes