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Link Gumbo: 2-28-18

End-of-the-month headlines.

Chris Parent/LSU

Tiger Gymnastics will have their chance to clinch another SEC regular season championship when Auburn comes to the PMAC at 2:30 p.m. The first set of Regional Qualifying Score, or RQS, rankings came out on Tuesday afternoon, with the Tigers landing at third behind Oklahoma and UCLA.

Meanwhile, junior Sarah Finnegan was named SEC Gymnast of the Week for the fourth time this season. That makes 10 weekly honors for the ladies this year. Finnegan took first on vault (9.90), bars (9.90), and beam 9.95). Finnegan posted an all-around score of 39.675 for her second-highest of the season. The junior now owns three of the top four all-around scores in the league this season.

LSU softball returned to Baton Rouge after losing the final two games of a six game set in California. Although LSU would of liked to get those last two games, there is no shame in losing to Oregon and UCLA who are among the nations elite. Once LSU’s offense can catch up to what the pitching staff is doing, this LSU team will be a real threat.

LSU women’s basketball picked up a nail biting win against Alabama on Sunday. Chloe Jackson led the way with 31 points and Ayana Mitchell followed her lead with 27 points and 12 rebounds. LSU has earned the double bye in the conference tournament as they will be the fourth seed when the games tip-off in Nashville.

We have a couple football notes to finish up on today. We have a new number 7. Texas Tech transfer Johnathan Giles will replace DJ Chark. 7 has been worn by some good player before Patrick Peterson, but it really picked up it’s tradition after going from Peterson to Mathieu to Fournette.

Some former Tigers didn’t seem to agree with the choice, though:

Jackson and nine other former Tigers will head to the NFL Combine this weekend, where the former sprint champion is making plans known to attempt and break the combine 40-yard dash record. BetDSI has currently set his over/under at 4.22, with Derrius Guice’s mark at 4.38.

In other football news, Keith Fulton, little brother of Kristian has walked on at LSU. This could mean Kristian is here to stay at LSU for good but time will tell on that note. New Tiger special teams coach Greg McMahon spoke with our friends at Off The Bench on 104.5/104.9 ESPN, laying out some tidbits on what he’ll be watching for this spring:

  • Giles is the current favorite to take over punt return duties, along with Kary Vincent and freshman Tae Provens.
  • “We’re very excited about Cole Tracy. He makes kicks,” said McMahon of the California native and transfer from Assumption College in Massachusetts. “We’re going to continue to work with Connor Culp and bring him along and become more consistent with him.”
  • “If there are two things we have to get fixed, (it’s) more consistent play in field goals and we have to keep the ball off the ground as a punt return unit. Can’t allow hidden yardage by not fielding the ball,” McMahon said.

Ross Dellenger also kicked off his spring practice coverage with notes on some position battles to watch. The Tigers will open practices on Sunday, March 11.

After an Iron Man’s career in the NFL, former LSU Punter Donnie Jones has announced his retirement after a 14 year career and finally getting a Super Bowl ring this season with the Philadelphia Eagles. Jones retires with multiple Eagles punting records, including gross punting average (45.37) and net average (40.5), most career punts inside the 20 (138), most single-season punts inside the 20 (34, 2014) and best net punting average in a season (41.6, 2015).