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Coach O Briefs Media Before Spring Practice

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The Tigers get back on the practice field on Saturday.

LSU v Texas A&M Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

Ed Orgeron held a short press conference Tuesday ahead of LSU opening spring practice this weekend.

No earth-shattering revelations from LSU’s new head coach, but he did lay out a lot of what to expect from these practices from a tone standpoint:

“We are excited about the direction of our football team. We have been led by Tommy Moffitt and his staff. I believe that Tommy is one of the best guys in the country to be leading our staff and leading our team. His staff is very energetic. We have worked hard this off-season on competition, and our drills have been predicated on competition and forcing us to get out of a comfortable zone and get into a zone that you have to give it everything that you have. Tommy has done a good job of that with our football team. I believe that we are bigger, we are stronger and we are faster. We are heading into the last week here of offseason, and we are getting ready for spring practice on Saturday. Our team is excited; our coaching staff is excited.”

Obviously, incorporating new offensive coordinator Matt Canada’s offense will be job one, and Orgeron led with the running backs there, who also have a new coach.

“I am excited to see Derrius Guice and his development under Tommie [Robinson], how he is going to get better, his fundamentals. I am excited to see the rest of our running backs develop under Tommie. When we were at USC, we had a young man named Buck Allen that was on the scout team. Tommie believed in Buck and put him in, and Buck became one of our best players. I know Tommie is big on development, and I’m looking for Nick Brossette, Darrel Williams and the rest of our guys to flourish under him.”

And of course, there’s that whole quarterback deal.

“Here’s the deal. Danny (Etling) is the leader right now. He will probably end up being the leader, but we don’t know that. I wanted to make it open for Justin (McMillan), for Lindsey (Scott Jr.), for Lowell (Narcisse), for Myles (Brennan). That’s what we told them when we recruited them. We want to give them a chance. Matt (Canada) is going to run his offense, but he is going to adapt to the quarterback that we have. He has proven that throughout the years. We are still going to run the football here with Derrius Guice as our running back, but we are going to open up the offense, throw it down the field with multiple shifts in the formation. That’s what he is known for.”

A few other highlights...

On the pecking order at wide receiver behind DJ Chark…

“Mickey (Joseph) is going to have to work with those guys. We have a new coach there. We are going to give them all opportunities. There is no certain pecking order. All of the guys are good athletes. We will see.”

On the importance of the spring for Matt Canada…

“(Matt Canada) has worked very hard. Here is the deal, as coaches we can sit in the office and have great ideas, but we have to execute on the field. I think he is going to start slow. He is going to feel this offense. Just like Dave (Aranda) did last year. Dave has many defenses and we ran three last year. I think he was able to adjust to the personnel. He is going to put most of the stuff in and the basics. We will go from there.”

On how he handles contact in spring…

“There are times that we will scrimmage. There is a lot of teaching going on in spring. The first few days are with helmets and a lot of teaching going on. The days that we can scrimmage we will scrimmage some. You have to watch your team as you go along. I want some toughness and there will be some times where we get after it. There will be some times where we hold off.”

On Lindsay Scott Jr. and how he has showed his talent…

“He showed that. Before I became head coach I ran scout team and Lindsay was my quarterback. The year before that, Danny (Etling) was the scout team quarterback. I saw that in Danny and see the same thing in Lindsay. He is very smart and can run the ball. He is strong and can throw the ball well. He is going to be right up there in the competition. He is a good quarterback.”

On Kevin Toliver II and if he will see more playing time…

“He’s ready to go. We made a 15-minute good-bad tape of each player. I watched it myself with the coaches. I really learned a lot about the whole team. I learned a lot about all of our players. I learned what they do well and what they need to improve on. That meeting with their coach was tremendous. It’s the same thing we did in the NFL. I learned a lot about Kevin Toliver. He could be an excellent football player. He just needs to remain more consistent.”

On changing special teams…

“I want to be aggressive on special teams. I want to block punts, block kicks and return for touchdowns. We have changed our whole special teams philosophy. Hopefully it will be a lot better. Personnel will be changed, schemes will be changed and the coaching style will be changed. Everything we do on special teams will be brand new.”

On defensive coordinator Dave Aranda’s defense …

“Here’s what happened. We lost some good rushers. Let me give you an example, we had a guy like Lewis Neal who could play the 3-4 with a four technique and go out and edge and rush. That’s valuable. We had some guys like (Davon) Godchaux, a pretty good football player inside. We have to replace those guys. It all depends on the rush. If we can generate a four-man rush, we will rush with four. If we can’t generate a four-man rush, then we will have to blitz more.”

On the spring game being at night …

“I think it was the idea to get a big crowd and it had a lot to do with TV times. We play at night. It will be exciting for our guys and will be exciting for our fans. I think we will get more guys there, which will make it more like a big game.”

From an injury standpoint, Will Clapp and Donnie Alexander will be out for the spring, along with Arden Key’s mysterious leave of absence. Orgeron did note that Devin Voorhies and Ed Alexander will be full-speed.

Practice begins on Saturday with LSU running 15 practices through the spring game on April 22.