5 reasons LSU football can win the national championship

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LSU head coach Les Miles tapped freshman quarterback Brandon Harris as Saturday’s starter. (Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports)

Brandon Harris is the real deal at quarterback

The LSU football team is looking to bounce back from a horrific passing performance in 2014, and sophomore quarterback Brandon Harris is the perfect man to make this happen.

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Harris provided flashes of brilliance as a true freshman last season, nearly mounting a 24-point comeback against Mississippi State. He also showed that he was not ready for the big stage, though, getting thrashed by Auburn during an abysmal performance the following week. He did not start another game the rest of the season.

This offseason, Harris has taken tremendous strides to improve as a player. After spending countless hours on the practice field and in the film room, his play during fall camp has earned rave reviews from teammates, coaches and the media. With the season just two weeks away, all signs point to him taking over the starting quarterback job.

Harris’ on-field performance is not the only area where he has improved, either. After 2014 starting quarterback Anthony Jennings was arrested back in June, Harris took it upon himself to become a leader of the offense.

Among the new responsibilities he took on was developing better chemistry with his receivers. It was here that Harris’ growth as both a player and leader became evident.

"“We all know he had the physical talent to play quarterback,” sophomore wide receiver John Diarse told The Advocate. “It was a mental thing with him. He definitely, definitely took it to heart this summer. This offseason, he really, really matured. “Brandon was here 24/7 (over the summer). He was already in the film room. Big leap (from last year).”"

After a freshman campaign that was less than stellar, Harris returns this season as a completely different player. He is not just looking to be a game-manager, but a serious vertical passing threat as well.

LSU will finally find an answer at quarterback in 2015, and by doing so, become a legitimate national title contender.

Next: 10 best players of the Les Miles era

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