It’s been an exciting last few days at LSU, with the center of attention being the addition of the newest “Mike the Tiger.”
Weather postponed the former Harvey’s official welcome Tuesday afternoon, but LSU Veterinary Professor Dr. David Baker, and President F. King Alexander discussed his acquisition. The Advocate also picked up some background on the young tiger from his previous owners.
A fan even sent us a photo of young Baby Harvey practicing for his future role.
@ATVS_PaulCrewe @valleyshook @ATVSPoseur He's been training for this job his whole life. (@jpdjill met him in Miami before he got famous.) pic.twitter.com/tBlMQdIP0j— Johnny Hutchinson (@JohnnyHutch) August 22, 2017
Perhaps the only event more popular than this was the solar eclipse that you’re totally tired of hearing about. The phenomenon, not set to occur for roughly another seven years, hit Baton Rouge on Monday.
And what a view he’s got as well.
.@MikeTheTiger gets a gorgeous sunset to end his first day out in his gorgeous new home. #GeauxTigers #LSU #MikeVII pic.twitter.com/hsIj8wGjqy— LSU Pix (@LSUpix) August 22, 2017
We can only hope you took the same precautions we did at LSU.
Must protect the Eyes of the Tigers!#SolarEclipse2017#LSU pic.twitter.com/72xZbMGo9e— LSU Tigers (@LSUsports) August 21, 2017
Former LSU quarterback Matt Flynn also had some advice to give.
No special glasses or cereal boxes needed. Just turn your phone to selfie mode and tap the sun. #SolarEclipse— Matt Flynn (@mflynn3) August 21, 2017
This past weekend, LSU volleyball hosted their annual kid’s clinic and Bump Up the Jam - a student volleyball tournament done yearly. The event is one of many the Tigers will have this year in an effort to give back to the community.
We had a busy weekend hosting our Kid’s Clinic & Bump up the Jam! We can’t wait to see you pack the PMAC Sept. 16! https://t.co/OAlPwdWaHZ— LSU Volleyball (@lsuvolleyball) August 21, 2017
Last week, The Advocate called running back Derrius Guice “second fiddle” to Leonard Fournette in 2016. It also said Guice would be stepping out from the current Jacksonville Jaguar’s “shadow” heading into this season.
Fournette himself responded to the article via Twitter shortly after its publication, disagreeing with the statement.
He never was in my shadow, when he first got to LSU i told him I'll lead him in the right way and he'll find out what being the best is like https://t.co/GanpIBgAm4— 7⃣ Leonard Fournette (@_fournette) August 18, 2017
Guice missed practice on Tuesday, though Coach O called it a minor situation. Arden Key remains on the sidelines, not cleared for contact. Key’s availability for the BYU game seems to be very much in question. Meanwhile, Clyde Edwards-Helaire’s tweet seems to indicate that Guice’s situation isn’t too serious.
Wisdom teeth got my brother gone!! @DhaSickest @LSUfootball pic.twitter.com/4Q8H3WT7Wp— Clyde EdwardsHelaire (@Clydro_22) August 23, 2017
The AP preseason poll was released on Monday, where LSU football finished in the top 25. The team ranked 13 overall, with Stanford behind them and Auburn in front. To no one’s surprise, Alabama headed the list.
One issue that has received a lot of attention is none other than the quarterback situation. As expected, Danny Etling has been named the starter. LSU team reporter Emily Dixon caught up with the signal caller to talk his progression throughout fall camp and the new offense over Matt Canada.
Quarterback Danny Etling talks with @EmilyvDixon about the installation of the offense, fall camp and more. @CommunityCoffee pic.twitter.com/XNfeVl1VwJ— LSU Football (@LSUfootball) August 18, 2017
Canada and Aranda had media availability Monday evening to discuss a wide range of topics. Typically, this will be the only time the two coordinators will be taking questions from the media all year. Videos here from LSU:
Canada was diplomatic about the QB questions (remember, this was a day before the decision to start Etling was announced) but did say he was impressed with Etling’s improvement in velocity since his back surgery. When asked about how he’ll put together a game plan for BYU: “Yeah. We’ve got a dart board up there and I throw it at it. Whatever it is, is what comes out.”
Coach Aranda was a cool customer as always. He mentioned multiple times the benefit of having to go against Matt Canada’s offense in practice is that without knowing what’s coming, the focus has been on developing solid technique that works in multiple situations. When asked about the three freshman Inside Linebackers Jacob Phillips, Tyler Taylor, and Patrick Queen, Aranda expects all 3 to play due to the current shallow depth of the position. He also spoke about how they will adjust for the presumed absence of Arden Key at the beginning of the season by focusing on making for opportunities for the team as a whole instead of having someone try to replace Key’s role.
The Advocate published transcripts of Dave Aranda’s and Matt Canada’s press conferences if you’d rather read than watch
In addition to the special press conferences on Monday, practice was officially opened to media for the first time this fall.
WELCOME! To #LSU Practice! (@BobbyO504 w/the Jurassic park music idea) pic.twitter.com/j6SiMEXbGl— T-Bob Hebert (@TBob53) August 21, 2017
LSU will take on BYU in just 11 days at NRG Stadium in Houston, TX. Kickoff is set for 8:30 p.m. central time.
Coach O’s first radio show is today and, due to renovations in progress at TJ Ribs, the first few shows of the season will be held in the South Stadium Club Level and admission is free.
The Advocate has an interesting profile of DL coach Pete Jenkins, and the massive DL technique tape library he’s been building and using to teach players since the 1980’s.
In one piece of former Tiger news, ex-LSU offensive lineman Maea Teuhema is set to join brother Sione at Southeastern Louisiana. Former Tiger QB Marcus Randall will need a new team as well, after losing his job as the head coach of Southern Lab in Baton Rouge, following the findings of an LHSAA investigation. Former LSU outfielder Leon Landry has found a new job himself, as a grad assistant on Paul Mainieri’s 2017-18 coaching staff. Former LSU assistant Frank Wilson has signed a new extension at UTSA, making him the 2nd highest paid coach in the CUSA and extending him there until 2022.
If you’re a season ticket holder and you think the number of neutral site games LSU has been playing in Houston instead of creating marquee home-and-homes has grown to crazy levels, you’re not wrong. After next week, the Tigers will have played more games against non-conference Power Five foes in Houston since 2014 than they've hosted in Tiger Stadium since 2009 (two). Perhaps that’s why, with the season only days away, LSU has yet to sell out of tickets for any of the 6 home games on this year’s very meager home slate.
ATVS alumnus Carter Bryant has also picked up a regular podcast over at SEC Country. His first episode, with Tiger legend Charles Alexander, is well worth your time.