Orgeron’s shift to Myles Brennan is sign of the times at LSU
Every once in a while, a football coach will make a move in a game that tells you what he really thinks.
That move, for LSU head coach Ed Orgeron, happened last Saturday night at Tiger Stadium against Syracuse.
Leading 21-10 in the third quarter, Orgeron sent true freshman quarterback Myles Brennan into the game. He gave Brennan the reins to the offense at the LSU 9-yard line.
Brennan promptly drove the Tigers 91 yards for a score.
Which is a footnote to the bigger story.
On the 23rd of September, I think Orgeron was telling himself the following about what he currently has on the field in 2017: that is an eight-win football team.
It was time to get the quarterback who LSU would be so heavily dependent in 2018 ready now.
Since the Tigers won the BCS national championship 10 years ago, the talent on the rest of the football team has been plenty good enough to carry average, or even below average, play at the quarterback position.
In 2018, that paradigm could be easily reversed.
Orgeron will depend on Myles Brennan to make big plays in the passing game to carry a roster that has to be retooled.
This season, LSU has started seven true freshmen.
In 2018, there will not only be an influx of true freshmen with an opportunity, but a host of junior college players as well.
In the meantime, when Orgeron looks at the rest of the 2017 schedule, he sees the following.
The Tigers will be underdogs at Florida. The Auburn game in Baton Rouge is a jump ball. LSU will favored on the road at Ole Miss, but the Tigers have lost three of their last four in Oxford.
LSU will be huge underdogs at Alabama, then close out the regular season with Arkansas, at Tennessee and back home versus Texas A&M.
In 2018, LSU will be without senior wide receiver DJ Chark, senior running back Darrel Williams and three juniors – Derrius Guice, Arden Key, and cornerback Donte’ Jackson – who will likely declare for the NFL draft.
Oh, by the way, the 2018 schedule is brutal.
Miami at Cowboys Stadium and Georgia at Tiger Stadium are added to the list of usual suspects. Plus, LSU must go on the road to Florida for the second consecutive season.
In 2018, Coach O may not have a bone crushing defense or a running attack that can flex its muscles against everyone but Alabama.
The Tigers will need plenty of plays from a sophomore-to-be quarterback who will have taken plenty of snaps in 2017.
There’s a reason Myles Brennan was in the game on the 9-yard line in the third quarter at Tiger Stadium.
Because it is time to get ready for 2018. That’s when the quarterback play at LSU must be much better than it is has been in a long time.
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WGNO Sports Director/106.1 FM
Ed is a New Orleans native, born at Baptist Hospital. He graduated Rummel High School, class of 1975, and subsequently graduated from Loyola University. Ed started in TV in 1977 as first sports intern at WVUE Channel 8. He became Sports Director at KPLC TV Channel 7 in Lake Charles in 1980. In 1982 he was hired as sports reporter…