College Football News Preview 2020: Previewing, predicting, and looking ahead to the LSU Tigers season with what you need to know.
5. College Football News Preview 2020: LSU Tigers Offense 3 Things To Know
– How the hell do you follow THAT? It was among the most efficient and effective offenses of all-time, leading the nation with 569 yards and 48.4 points per game. It was unstoppable when it got rolling, put up 42 points or more in 12 of the 15 games, and …
Offensive coordinator Steve Ensminger is still around, and Scott Linehan is a good, veteran coach to step in for Joe Brady as the passing game coordinator, but how do you possibly replace eight draft picks, four starters on the offensive line, five of the top eight receivers, the leading rusher – who finished third on the team in receptions – and … that guy.
CFN in 60 Video: LSU Tigers Preview
– Remember, Joe Burrow wasn’t Joe Burrow at this time last year. He was a good, promising veteran quarterback who might be a mid-round draft pick with a little bit of luck. No one could’ve seen that the greatest season ever by any college quarterback was coming. All he did was hit 76% of his throw for 5,671 yards with 60 touchdowns and six interceptions, and he ran for five scores, too.
He won the Heisman, he won the SEC Championship, he won the Heisman, and he became the No. 1 overall draft pick ahead of Chase Young and Jeff Okudah – all-timer prospects for their respective positions.
Myles Brennan doesn’t have to be Joe Burrow, but anything he does will pale in comparison. The junior saw a little time last year – throwing for 353 yards and a touchdown with a pick – and he’s got the skills and upside to come up with a huge season by any normal and reasonable standards.
It’s Brennan or bust when it comes to experience with a slew of talented-but-untested freshmen – Max Johnson and TJ Finley – fighting for the No. 2 job.
The biggest overall plus is another loaded receiving corps.
Justin Jefferson is done, and TE Thaddeus Moss left early, but Ja’Marr Chase was supposed to keep everything going after coming off an 84-catch, 1,780-yard, 20 touchdown season – and then he chose to opt out on the 2020 season.
However, Terrace Marshall caught 46 passes for 671 yards and 13 scores, and on the way are a whole lot of talented wideouts from the recruiting class to restock the shelves, along with superstar tight end prospect Arik Gilbert.
– Three starters from the offensive line were drafted, and another graduated. The cupboard is hardly bare – Ed Orgeron offensive lines are always going to be good – but this is a bigger deal to figure out than any other part of the O.
Austin Deculus is back to man one tackle job, but it’s 6-7, 314-pound Dare Rosenthal who has the biggest upside. He left school for personal reasons, but he’s expected to be back for the season – he should end up shining at left tackle. Junior Ed Ingram should be solid at left guard.
Who will they all block for?
Clyde Edwards-Helaire wasn’t exactly the unsung cog in the system, but he certainly took a backseat in national coverage to Burrow and all the great receivers. He ran for 1,414 yards and 16 scores, and caught 55 passes for 453 yards and a touchdown. Now he’ll be doing his thing for the Kansas City Chiefs after being taken in the first round.
It’ll be a true running back-by-committee approach – and it’ll work just fine. 226-pound battering ram sophomore Tyrion Davis-Price was third on the team with 295 yards and six scores, former superstar recruit John Emery ran for 188 yards and four touchdowns, and 215-pound Chris Curry ran for 90 yards in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl win over Oklahoma. They’ll all get their chances.