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LSU Adds Second Quarterback To 2013 Class

LSU quarterback commit Hayden Rettig has found some competition in the class of 2013.

That’s because quarterback Anthony Jennings from Marietta (Ga.) High School committed to LSU on Thursday. He chose the Tigers over Alabama, Arkansas, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Oregon and others.

“LSU is a perennial powerhouse in college football and I’m looking forward to helping the Tigers continue to be in the National Championship hunt year in and year out,” Jennings said in a released statement. “I’m looking forward to earning the respect of my future teammates at LSU and to play for a coach like Les Miles, someone who has won a National Championship in the past and knows how to get his players to perform at their very best. I’m also very excited to be coached and mentored by Steve Kragthorpe. As my position coach, we have already developed a great relationship and I know that will only get stronger in the future.”

Jennings is considered the nation’s No. 13 dual-threat quarterback by ESPN RecruitingNation. He’s the 17th prospect to commit to LSU for the 2013 class.

Jennings, who ESPN considers to be the nation’s No. 259 prospect overall, gives LSU its ninth commitment inside the newly released ESPN 300.

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LSU Recruit Teases Coaches Before Signing

LSU signee Avery Johnson — the little brother of former Tiger star Patrick Peterson — tried to have a little fun with the coaches in Baton Rouge today.  Apparently the wide receiver doesn’t realize that said coaches live and die with the promises, commitments, signatures and de-commitments of teenagers like himself.

Les Miles just shared the following anecdote with ESPNU:

 

“Avery Johnson, we know him well.  He’s certainly been to our camp and he’s been around Pat, and he’s family.  He got (assistant coach Steve) Kragthorpe on the phone and he said to Steve, ‘I’m going to another school that where’s red.’  And Steve said, ‘Are you serious?’  All the blood left his face.  ‘Yeah, really, I’m signing with that other school.’  And Steve said to Frank Wilson, ‘Take the phone, I don’t think I’m gonna make it.’  It was shortly thereafter that Avery said, ‘No, I’m coming.  You guys received my fax, didn’t you?’  We checked the fax machine and it was just arriving, so good fun being had.  Now, I can also say during freshman two-a-days there’ll be some extra sprints for him.”

 

Brutal.

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SEC Recruiting Headlines – 12/29/11

1. Defensive back Jordan Diggs will reduce his list of schools from five to three on Monday.

2. Here’s a look at some of the top juniors in the state of Georgia.

3. Steve Kragthorpe deserves credit for helping LSU land top quarterback Gunner Kiel.

4. Running back Mike Davis has scheduled his final three official visits.

5. Tennessee wide receiver commit Alton “Pig” Howard has been added to the roster for the Under Armour All-American Game.

6. Several prospects are expected to announce their decisions at the Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl in Phoenix.

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Report: LSU Assistant To Visit Quarterback Kiel

The recruiting nation took notice last week when quarterback Gunner Kiel reopened his recruiting.

Kiel, who had been committed to Indiana, is considered the nation’s top quarterback prospect by 247Sports.com. That’s why schools like Notre Dame (where he visited on Saturday), Alabama, Florida, Southern Cal and others will be in the mix for Kiel.

And it looks like LSU will, too. Steve Wiltfong of 247Sports wrote today that LSU quarterbacks coach Steve Kragthorpe is expected to attend Kiel’s game Friday at Columbus (Ind.) East High School.

LSU has a bye week as it prepares to play Alabama in Tuscaloosa on Nov. 5.

Kiel is one of several top prospects LSU will target thanks to the Tigers’ success on the field this year, according to JC Shurburtt of 247Sports.

“I think LSU is quietly putting out feelers to a lot of the top prospects in the 2012 class given the season the Tigers are having,” Shurburtt wrote.

LSU has 20 commitments for the class of 2012 but is still looking for its first pledge from a quarterback.

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Miles Talks Up His 2-QB System (With Good Reason)

Quick.  Who’s got the top-rated passing offense in the Southeastern Conference?

If you said LSU, you’re right… and you’re probably still shocked that you said LSU.  Coming into the season, Jordan Jefferson was an unpopular starter and Jarrett Lee was an unpopular backup best known for throwing seven pick-6 interceptions as a freshman.  Zach Mettenberger was the people’s choice to quarterback the Tigers.

Good thing Les Miles didn’t listen to the people.  When Jefferson ran into legal troubles, Miles didn’t hesitate to name Lee his starter.  And then senior has responded by throwing just one interception in 132 attempts.

When the charges against Jefferson were lessened, Miles immediately reinstated him to the team and got him back onto the field.  We at MrSEC.com wondered if the return of Jefferson might negatively impact the psyche and confidence of Lee.  So far, it hasn’t.

And Miles is a happy man as a result:


“We enjoy our quarterback situation.  We’re fortunate to have two veteran quarterbacks who have both played as starters… A diversity of attack with our quarterbacks is what we want…

It’s going to give defensive coordinators issues.”


It already has.  Readers of this site know that we’re not fond of two-quarterback systems unless the two players in question are totally different types of players.  Jefferson and Lee are.  Wisely, Steve Kragthorpe and Greg Studrawa have the quarterbacks running two different types of offense.  Jefferson handles the run-heavy, option-style attack.  Lee takes care of the pro-style system which features more passing.

Defensive coordinators studying LSU don’t just have to prepare for two quarterbacks.  They have to prepare for two offenses.

Those offenses are proving to be awfully hard to stop, too.

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LSU’s Chavis Says It’s Great To Be A Tiger

LSU defensive coordinator John Chavis will be starting his third season in Baton Rouge in just a few weeks.  The Tennessee alum — who won a national title running the Vols’ defense in 1998 — says a fan paid him the ultimate compliment at a summer speaking stop:


“A guy made a comment at the end of my talk, and it really made me feel great.  ‘Coach, you guys talk about the Tigers — the players and the team.  Well, we want you to know that you’re a Tiger, too.’  What a great feeling that was to hear from one of our fans.”


Chavis said that “everybody’s a Tiger” feel will also apply to Steve Kragthorpe — recently diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease — and Greg Studrawa who will fill in as offensive coordinator.  “When you’re a Tiger, you’re a Tiger,” Chavis said.

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SEC Headlines 8/7/2011 Part Three

1. Outscored 92-68 last year, fourth quarter is a big priority at Georgia.

2. Mark Richt says tight end Orson Charles is Georgia’s best receiver.  Richt is the only coach in the conference who’s run his program for more than a decade.

3. Bulldogs want to clog up the middle with two big nose guards. Rare Sunday practice for Georgia.

4. Yet another explanation of what Steve Kragthorpe’s role will be at LSU now that he’s stepped down from offensive coordinator duties in the wake of Parkinson’s disease.

5. Young LSU wide receivers can look to veterans for inspiration. Three injured LSU players now back at full strength.

6. “Sloppy as sin.” Les Miles description of the first full-squad practice.

7. Arkansas has the potential for impressive bookends on their defensive line.

8. A 4-2-5 formation for Ole Miss.

9. Houston Nutt on his freshmen class: ”I’ll tell you what – I love them more today than I did on signing day.”

10. Joker Phillips also likes his freshmen class.

11. How does Vanderbilt wide receiver Jordan Matthews get better?  With a pitching machine.

12. Expect a lot of competition for starting jobs in the Alabama offensive line. Barrett Jones moves from right guard to left tackle.

13. Tennessee defensive lineman Malik Jackson: ”Playing in the Pac 10 Conference is different than playing in the SEC.”

14. New Tennessee linebacker coach Peter Simon has a mystery group on his hands.

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LSU’s Kragthorpe Says It’s Tough To Groom Multiple QBs

New offensive coordinator Steve Kragthorpe met with some LSU fans yesterday and he let it be known that he’s not a big fan of playing multiple quarterbacks.

Last year, Jordan Jefferson was sometimes relieved by Jarrett Lee.  Both return this year along with newcomer — and fan favorite — Zach Mettenberger.  But it sounds like Kragthorpe wants to have one man pulling the trigger, not two or three:


“I’m not opposed to a multiple-quarterback system.  But it’s hard to get more than one or two quarterbacks ready every week with this 20-hour rule.  If we had a 20-hour rule when I was playing, we would have played the games on Wednesday.”


The coach had nothing but praise for Jefferson, the incumbent who head coach Les Miles has been so very high on this offseason.

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Miles At The Podium

Here’s a rundown of LSU coach Les Miles’ comments:

* Miles said his team is “very ambitious” and has “a tremendous mindset.”

* Miles said Steve Kragthorpe has helped Jordan Jefferson.  “He’s at the best position that he has been in… listening and taking coaching.  He’s been well-coached, but there’s another way to say it and describe it and it might get out of his hand and it might give him the ability to anticipate the throw better.  And it appears to me that that’s happening.”

* Miles mentioned Russell Shepard as being a good player at receiver… further nixing the rumors of a Shepard suspension.

* Miles delivering a long introductory comment as he does each year. 

* Miles said Ryan Baker could provide good leadership from the linebacker spot.  He believes he has guys who are ready to step up into leadership roles.

* Asked about the 25-man signing cap, Miles said: “As long as we’re all in the same position, I think that 25 is something that we can do and I don’t think there’s any real issue there.”  Spoken like a man who’s recruiting in a state with a deep talent base.  (But we still agree with him.)

* No one’s going toward the ESPN, Willie Lyles stuff.

* Miles said LSU has looked at tape of Oregon’s game with Auburn.  Of course.

* Asked when he first knew of Willie Lyles, Miles said, “I can’t really comment.  I’m kind of prohibited from commenting on Willie Lyles.  The only thing I can tell you is that we look for film and video anywhere we can find it. … That’s really all I can say.”

* Asked about Zach Mettenberger, Miles suggested that Jarrett Lee is still the #2 quarterback.  “We will play that guy that gives the greatest opportunity for victory and right now I believe that that’d be Jefferson.”

* Asked if the thinks the Lyles-ESPN report will pass muster with the NCAA, the coach said, “All I can tell you is we’re gonna cooperate fully and I can’t really make much more comment than that.”

* Miles isn’t worried about his team looking ahead to the Alabama game.  “Well we play Oregon in the first game and we play six games on the road. … It’s very easy not to look ahead.  I promise.”

* Asked about Shepard not being at Media Days, Miles said: “There were some things that Russell had to take care of back in Baton Rouge.”

* Miles on messageboard heat that Jefferson gets: “I don’t know that I’ve ever been to a messageboard.  I’ve certainly instructed my team to avoid the internet.  Those people that sign their names ‘Slick Willie’ don’t necessarily have legitimate opinions.”  Funny that he used the name “Willie” right there.

* Asked about the amusing video featuring him playing basketball against his young kids, the coach said he defended his seven-year-old daughter “extremely well.”  He added, “I didn’t think that this was gonna be as big a deal — kinda like eating grass — but really it was a family outing.”

* Miles was asked if Shepard’s absence has anything to do with a compliance issue involving off-campus housing.  “I don’t know exactly the specifics of that.  Only thing I can tell you is that this was an issue where there were some things he needed to handle in his personal life that needed an immediate resolution.  That’s why he’s not with us.”

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SEC Headlines – 7/13/11 Part One

1.  Pat Forde of ESPN.com says “playing for pay in college is a topic whose time has come.”

2.  ESPN is breaking down the Department of Education’s budget numbers for BCS schools and here’s there look-in at Florida’s info.  (Keep in mind that each school prepares its budget in its own way… so this data — even though it’s the only data we ever see — can’t be used for a true apples-to-apples comparison.)

3.  Can LSU quarterback Jordan Jefferson turn the corner under new offensive coordinator Steve Kragthorpe just as Auburn’s Jason Campbell once did under first-year coordinator Al Borges?

4.  Mississippi State’s basketball team will kick off a European tour in Amsterdam on August 7th.  (Not to be too cute, but with the surge in marijuana use among college athletes, is Amsterdam really where a coach wants to take his team?)

5.  The Gainesville Sun says Alabama’s Dre Kirkpatrick’s a good player…

6.  And that this year’s Alabama-Florida game should be a dandy.

7.  No breaking news here — Thanks to a year’s worth of scandals, many college football fans believe the SEC is #1 when it comes to being dirty. 

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