It's hard to choose your favorite highlight. Great plays happen all of the time, and it's hard to just choose one play, even the plays with names like Billy Cannon's Halloween Run or the Bluegrass Miracle. But the perfect LSU highlight, for me, is more than just a great play, it is a metaphor for the entire Les Miles era.
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Brad Wing:
If you were to explain LSU football under Les Miles with one play, I'd be hard pressed to come up with a better example than this. First things first, the play is awesome. The punter calling his own number on 4th and 15 and then taunting the Florida defenders on his way to the end zone is one of those things that isn't supposed to happen. Even our punter has swag.
Very few plays get you cheering and laughing. This was one of them. And sure, it was a meaningless play late in a blowout, but the Florida game has long been a showcase for great players making great plays. This was just another example of a guy coming up big when the brightest lights turned on.
The backbone of Les Miles' success at LSU has been special teams. While the yardage zealots go nuts counting yards and calling Les lucky, they miss all of the yards LSU picks up every game on special teams. Not through blocks, but by long punts with no returns. Miles constantly flips field position by using his punter as a weapon. And we've been pulling the same fake punt stuff since Jeremy Witten was calling his own number as well.
Fake kicks are the most exciting play in football, and Miles lets his kickers call the play on their own. Hey, why not? This game is supposed to be fun. If you want a joyless slog by a bunch of automatons terrified of ever making a mistake, go watch Alabama. LSU plays hard, but this team plays fun. Trick plays and odd calls are the norm because this isn't life or death. This stuff is supposed to be fun. Miles plays loose, and his players reward him.
Other fans wished they had a team to root for that was half as fun as LSU. That's why they complain so loudly about how lucky he is. It's because they are jealous. Not just of LSU's success, but of how much fun our players seem to have while attaining success. Other fans must wonder: how much of a blast must it be to follow a Les Miles coached team?
Well, it's a huge blast. And it's totally worth it. Even when the awesome touchdown gets called back for celebration. Because sometimes we party too hard. And what could be more perfect than that? A brilliant play because of a gutsy call "ruined" by a player having too much fun?
That's LSU football in the Les Miles era in a nutshell. I wouldn't have it any other way.
What say y'all? What's your favorite highlight?