No. 6 Football Readies For Trip to Auburn

by LSUsports.net (@LSUsports)
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No. 6 Football Readies For Trip to Auburn

BATON ROUGE — The excitement continued to build for LSU on Wednesday as the sixth-ranked Tigers had another good workout in advance of Saturday’s game against ninth-ranked Auburn.

Saturday’s contest between LSU and Auburn will be the only top 10 matchup in college football this weekend. ESPN will televise the game with the kickoff slated for 6:45 p.m. ESPN’s College Gameday along with College Gameday Radio will both be on hand to promote the contest.

“I think (our players) are looking forward to this game,” LSU coach Les Miles said after practice on Wednesday. “It is a game that has significant consequences on the division and the guys look forward to playing games of great interest.

“We’ve told our team that it is gong to be a great college they experience. It’s a great environment. We were there a couple of years ago. There could not be a finer game day environment. We like playing at night.”

LSU brings a 2-0 overall mark into the game following last week’s 41-3 win over North Texas. LSU’s other win came by a 41-13 margin against Appalachian State. Despite having its second game postponed due to Hurricane Gustav, Miles said he feels like his team has played enough to be ready on Saturday.

”I think we are as prepared as we could be with two games,” Miles said. “Our non-game week gave us an opportunity to get better.”

Auburn, on the other hand, has played three games, including a road Southeastern Conference contest against Mississippi State last week. The Tigers are 3-0 overall and 1-0 in league play following their 3-2 win last week over Mississippi State.

Wednesday’s practice session had the Tigers continuing to refine the game plan for Saturday as well as having the offense call the plays with simulated crowd noise being piped into the practice facility.

“I liked our practice today,” Miles said. “We have some work to do certainly, but our guys are working hard.”

The Tigers will scale back their practice session on Thursday before holding a walk-thru on Friday. The team departs for Auburn on Friday afternoon.

LSU HEAD COACH LES MILES

Opening Statement…
“I liked our practice. We have some work to do certainly, but our guys are working hard. Today went well.”

On Jacob Cutrera preparing for the game…
“I think he has always prepared very well. He’s prepared as a starter and I don’t think that’s changed.  He looks forward to playing ball and I think he does that whether he is named as a starter or not.”

On Trindon Holliday returning the ball…
“The exception to the ten yard rule is if the ball is kicked back and it’s Trindon [Holliday] with no one close, he’s allowed to return it. We prefer to put a strike on the ten yard and let the ball bounce.”

On if he thinks they can win without establishing the run…
“It’s very difficult to predict the ?Can you win?’ I think we can, but I think we are going to establish the run anyway. If we didn’t establish the run, then I think we would find a way in some facet of our football to win. That would be my impression.”

On if he plans to use with a variety of backs…
“We will certainly use our backs. We will use Charles [Scott] and other backs as well. We will balance and throw the ball, as well as punt and kick it, score and play field position. Frankly, make it hard on them to move the ball by playing defense. I think we will win in all three phases that way.”

On the abilities of LSU’s offensive line…
“I think they are a very quality front seven with great technique who understand the scheme and make plays very well. I think that our offensive line understands that and is looking forward to that and playing against [Auburn]. It’s a great challenge. Our guys have historically played better against our best opponents.”

On Auburn’s offense on film…
“They have a lot of weapons and they can throw it. The 3-2 score [Auburn vs. Miss. State] was typical of a bad day, but they have weapons, guys that can catch it and the quarterback throws well. One quarterback runs well too. There are some weapons there.”

On preparing LSU for the noise in Auburn’s stadium…
“We’ve told our team that it is gong to be a great college they experience. It’s a great environment. We were there a couple of years ago. There could not be a finer game day environment. We like playing at night. Night is a great time for us to take the field.”

On if he feels the games against Appalachian State and North Texas have prepared them well…
“I hope it was the proper tune-up. You never know until you get to the game, but I think we are as prepared as we could be with two games. Our non-game week gave us an opportunity to get better.”

On punter Brady Dalfrey
“We paid some attention to Brady [Dalfrey] this week. We would tell him the air is the same and the snap is the same. He is very talented. He just needs to let it rip and have fun. The competition helps Brady deal with game day. I wouldn’t be surprised if both punters punted.”

On the offensive plan for the quarterbacks…
“We will throw the ball as we have in the past and as we will in this game. Sometimes down the field, sometimes intermediate and sometimes short.”

On how the team handles communication in a noisy environment…
“We use a number of ways. We have a silent cadence. If it is so loud that we can’t use cadence, we use a style of cadence that is ball-key with a rhythmic snap. We will give the cadence to the center and it is imperfect, but it works.

On changes in the lineup…
“I think you will see Charles Alexander playing more. He came out of the game and really feels better, a very good sign. He played a little bit, but played hard while he was there. His ability showed greater strength this game.”

On the team’s outlook playing against Auburn…
“I think they are looking forward to this game. It is a game that has significant consequences on the division and the guys look forward to playing games of great interest.”

On his advice to Andrew Hatch and Jarrett Lee on how to focus in a noisy environment…
“Well the good news is that they have been in Tiger Stadium and they understand what a loud crowd is. I think everyone draws back on their own personal experience. At some game or some point in time, whether in high school or junior high, there was a game of consequence and everyone falls back on those experiences.”

On how LSU has prepared for Auburn’s offense…
“The scrambler [quarterback], when he is in the game, it appears they do certain things. When the other guy is in, he is more a thrower. It’s the same offense, just interpreted differently I think. I think our guys are ready to see that and they certainly understand it.”

On LSU’s past games at Auburn…
“Generally speaking, the team that wins is the best team and I believe that. I want to go try to be the best team if we can Saturday.”