Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

LSU Preseason Position Breakdown: Special Teams

Patrick Peterson, Josh Jasper, Colt David, Brad Wing, and Tyrann Mathieu are all LSU Tigers that have made a huge impact on special teams for LSU in recent years. (Watch just a fraction of the special teams dominance from 2011) LSU special teams have been an absolute thrill to watch in past years. Led by James Harriston’s powerful leg and Beckham’s ability to turn any return into a game-changing highlight, the special teams shouldn’t disappoint in 2013.

LSU will have another Australian punter in 2013, as Jamie Keehan takes over the punting duties for Brad Wing. Keehan averaged 44.6 yards on 9 punts in the bowl game last year. Keehan is a phenominal athlete and was a national champion javelin thrower and rower in Australia. He should be a solid replacement for Wing, whose production degressed his sophomore year.

Junior James Hairston will take over for Drew Alleman as LSU’s place kicker. Hairston took over the kickoff duties as a freshman, due to his remarkably powerful leg. However, his accuracy has been a bit shaky. If he can improve this before the season, Hairston has the strength to potentially be added to the list of great LSU kickers.

Odell Beckham Jr. should be the star of special teams in 2013. Expect Beckham to be one of the most dynamic return men in all of college football in 2013. Last year, he showed glimpses of how spectacular he can truly be. (Need Proof?)With another year of experience, it is unfathomable to think of how great he can be with any improvement at all. With his freakish abilities, he will turn LSU returns into must-see moments.

Keehan should be consistent in the punting game. With accuracy improvement, Hairston could truly be a star. Beckham should display his freakish talents this year. The LSU special teams should have a fully sound unit and could be the difference for the Tigers in winning several games in the grueling SEC West.




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