At least that's what I imagine is going through Gary Crowton's head right now as he taps his fingers together in rhythm reminiscent of an evil genius. A year ago, Crowton, LSU's offensive mad scientist, was unable to use his full arsenal for much of the season.
The Tigers, who set the school record for scoring in 2007 with 541 points and 38.6 points a game, found themselves behind early and often in 2008 — 14-3 at Auburn in the second quarter, 20-0 at Florida in the second quarter, 21-7 to Georgia in the second quarter, 24-3 to Troy in the second quarter, 21-3 in the second quarter to Ole Miss and 14-3 at Arkansas in the first quarter. Of those six games, LSU lost four.
LSU also had its worst defense this decade as it finished 11th in the Southeastern Conference and 73rd nationally against the pass and ninth in the SEC and 32nd nationally in total yards allowed a game.
This all decreased the size of Crowton's bag of plays, and LSU scored 139 fewer points in 2008.
Besides yet another unnecessary pot shot by Guilbeau at last year's team, you can see why Crowton felt uneasy about opening up the creative aspect of his play calling. Having a trio of inexperienced quarterbacks probably didn't help either. (On a side note, can you believe we trailed that bad in that many games?)
However, fast foward a year and think of all the weapons coming back. The best running back in the SEC. The (I would argue) best receiver in the SEC. The best left tackle in the SEC. The best tight end in the SEC. And a quarterback with a little seasoning that could be dangerous running and throwing. Sprinkle in the fastest player in college football, a highlight reel freshman quarterback/reciever/slot back/popcorn seller, and the nation's most highly recruited wide out. Crowton has to have visions of sugar-plums dancing in his head.
"Oh yeah, we're going to mix it up," Scott said. "I feel like coach Crowton is up there on his computerfiguring out something. I'm just waiting to see it. I can see him throwing Shepard in here and Trindon in there. I think it's going to be great. We've got too many weapons — quarterbacks, the receiving corp, the tight end — to just strictly run the ball. I can't wait."
It's easy to forget in 2007 that Crowton led LSU to a school record for points at 38.6 per game. Give John Chavis that to work with each week and I'll take my chances.