Garrett Nussmeier tops LSU’s depth chart, but does it mean he’ll play in Texas Bowl?

Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports /

LSU football revealed its depth chart this weekend for the Tigers’ matchup against the Kansas State Wildcats in the Texas Bowl on January 4.

True freshman quarterback Garrett Nussmeier was listed as a starter.

This is notable since Nussmeier is the only scholarship quarterback on the roster (Myles Brennan won’t return until spring practice, and Max Johnson transferred to Texas A&M).

LSU is hoping to redshirt Nussmeier this season. If he plays in the Texas Bowl, he’ll lose a year of eligibility, unless the NCAA gives him a waiver (which doesn’t appear to be the case).

So does Nussmeier’s inclusion on the depth chart mean he’ll play against Kansas State?

Will Garrett Nussmeier play against Kansas State?

It doesn’t appear that Nussmeier’s name at the top of LSU’s depth chart means he’s going to play in the Texas Bowl.

247Sports’ Shea Dixon reported on Saturday that he’s expecting wide receiver Jontre Kirklin to start at quarterback for the Tigers on Tuesday night.

Kirklin is a former high school quarterback, so he has some experience playing the position.

I’m guessing that Nussmeier’s inclusion on the depth chart is for two reasons:

  1. To recognize Nussmeir as LSU’s starting quarterback to end the 2021 season (though this probably doesn’t mean much with a new staff because the Tigers will have an open quarterback competition this spring).
  2. To make Kansas State prepare for Nussmeier and Kirklin.

There’s no reason for interim head coach Brad Davis to show his hand. Kansas State knows that Nussmeier probably won’t be playing. But because LSU has never ruled Nussmeier out, Kansas State still has to prepare for him.

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This isn’t an ideal situation, but the Tigers have handled it well so far.