Spring practice is a critical period for LSU. Les Miles has rarely had this many position battles. Playing time is up for grabs at multiple positions on both offense and defense.
Week 1 was packed with shocking position switches. But the biggest story, to no surprise, was the quarterback battle.
News from the Week
Freshman Brandon Harris took his first snap at an LSU practice this week. According to ESPN.com's David Ching, front-runner Anthony Jennings says he was impressed with the throwing ability of Harris and second-year signal-caller Hayden Rettig.
Miles said the coaching staff has a "good idea" of who will be the starter according to Glenn Guilbeau of Gannett Louisiana. LSU entered spring with seven quarterbacks on its roster. It went down to six when senior Rob Bolden moved to wide receiver last week.
According to Jim Kleinpeter of The New Orleans Times-Picayune, defensive end Jermauria Rasco will sit out all of spring due to a shoulder injury. Safety Corey Thompson could stay sidelined as well as he recovers from knee surgery.
Updates on Current Position Battles
LSU has made a wide variety of position switches as Miles looks for the right mix of talent via The Advocate's Ross Dellenger.
- From quotes and information Dellenger has gathered, he believes Jennings and Harris are separating themselves from Rettig and the rest of the pack.
- There appears to be three finalists to replace Trai Turner at right guard. Evan Washington, who filled in for Turner when he was injured against Auburn, is currently running with the first group. Miles said senior Fehoko Fanaika and sophomore Ethan Pocic are getting snaps as well.
- Travin Dural and John Diarse have been running with the first group the most at wide receiver.
- Kwon Alexander has shifted from strongside to weakside linebacker to replace Lamin Barrow. Lamar Louis takes over Alexander's vacancy. Kendell Beckwith is in the mix at middle linebacker after playing on the outside last season.
- Jalen Mills, who switched from corner to safety, is currently starting alongside Ronald Martin in the secondary. Sophomores Rashard Robinson and Tre'Davious White are at corner.
LSU added two new coaches to its staff this offseason. LSU offensive line coach Jeff Grimes is in his first season after spending a year at Virginia Tech. Spring will be critical for Grimes as he has told players no position is safe. Bradley Dale Peveto has returned to Baton Rouge, this time as a special teams coordinator. Peveto was a former co-defensive coordinator for the Tigers.
What to Look Forward To Next Week
LSU will practice tomorrow, Tuesday and Thursday of next week via Matt Boudreaux of NBC 33.
According to Guilbeau, Miles is tempted to practice non-enrolled freshman 5-star Malachi Dupre due to the low number of receivers on the roster. Dupre has the talent to make an immediate impact next season.
The battle at defensive tackle will likely heat up as practices get more physical. Look for a few names to emerge over the next week. Miles listed four names that have stood out to him thus far.
Miles on DTs: Thomas, Frank Herron, LaCouture, Greg Gilmore, those guys really have a nice strong presence inside. #LSU— Scott Rabalais (@RabalaisAdv) March 13, 2014