Crystal Logiudice-US PRESSWIRE
The LSU Tigers conclude their non-conference portion of the schedule at home today against the Bethune-Cookman Wildcats of the MEAC. It's a game that the Tigers should expect to win, and is hopefully a good way to build some confidence going into SEC play against Auburn.
Although LSU let some chances slip away in the non-conference schedule, overall the Tigers are in decent shape heading into SEC play next week. Unlike much of the SEC, LSU didn't have a lot of losses, or any bad losses. If LSU ends up being one of the better SEC teams this year, they could benefit from playing a weak, yet win filled, non-conference schedule.
Of course, this is all assuming that they are able to defeat Bethune-Cookman today. The Wildcats are one of the teams that is essentially funded by teams like LSU and spend much of the first few months on the road. So far, the only team somewhat comparable to LSU that they have played is the Pitt Panthers, who won by 49 points. LSU isn't at the level of Pittsburgh, but LSU should be able to win by a comfortable margin.
Anthony Hickey is expected to play this game after sitting out for disciplinary reasons against Houston Baptist. Hopefully it is the last time that we have to see him sit out, especially with how effective he tends to be against SEC competition. Johnny O'Bryant should play in this game as well after sitting out against HBU with a leg injury. Coach Jones said that it was simply precautionary, so that's also good news.
Overall, I don't think there's much that we will learn about this team today, I think the SEC opener against Auburn will give us a good understanding of where we should finish in SEC play. There's not really one player that I think we need to rely on. If anything, a balanced scoring attack against Bethune-Cookman would be ideal to help keep future teams honest defensively. Of course, the shooting should improve, and it would be nice to see if Charles Carmouche can regain his touch that he had at the beginning of the year,
Game time is set for 12:30 CT but there's no TV. I think that the best part about SEC play will be that ESPN3 should be available for every game if it isn't on TV.