Les Miles began Monday afternoon’s press conference by paying his respects to LSU’s former athletic director and basketball star Joe Dean who passed away Sunday. “The path we’re on here is based on, in part, his vision,” Miles said.
Miles then transitioned to the past weekend of college football where he got to watch the games as a fan like each of us on Saturday’s and like many couldn’t believe the ending to the Georgia-Auburn game. “I did the first thing very much like the fan, as the receiver … the Lord blessed that man.” … Said Miles: “That’s college football.”
Focusing on this week’s opponent, the Texas A&M Aggies, which will be the first time since LSU hosted Furman four weeks ago that the Tigers will be in front of their fans, Miles said he can’t wait and I’m sure the fans share that sentiment.
The Aggies are led by Johnny Manziel who Miles says is the best player in college football and has improves as a passer this season and the entire offense as a result is clearly better. LSU was able to keep Manziel out of the end zone last year and still remain the only team in his career to do that, so how will LSU defend the Heisman winner?
“Some of the things we used a year ago we’ll use, some we’ll not. … I think we have a nice scheme, a variety of ways to pressure him. Disguise some coverage. Get in the backfield. Move him when we can.”
But Miles is not interested in this turning into a repeat of a shootout similar to what LSU experienced with Georgia earlier this year. “I want the defense to stop them. I like my defense. I think they’ll be a challenge to A&M.”
LSU had a better defense and was able to get to him with Barkevious Mingo and two other NFL linemen on the front four so it certainly will be a challenge to slow him down again this year, so the onus will be on the offense to have long drives to keep the ball away from him and finish with touchdowns, not field goals against a poor Aggie defense.
The good thing is that Zach Mettenberger, who we last saw limping off the field at Alabama, has practiced last week and is going to practice this week and he had more of a bruise than a sprain.
[h/t The Advocate for the quotes]