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LSU fans have something to be thankful for this Thanksgiving … that it’s not 2016.

Let’s celebrate Thanksgiving, LSU football style

Nick Suss

LSU football is in the news every day, and the Bayou Bengal Briefing is here to keep you updated with the latest headlines five mornings a week. Join us every Monday through Friday for the biggest news on Tigers football, recruiting, baseball and more. Enjoy!

Thanksgiving, the LSU way

Happy Thanksgiving, Tigers fans. And if there’s one thing we can all agree to be thankful for, it’s that we’re in the year 2017, not 2016. Because Thanksgiving 2016 was about as stressful of a day as there’s ever been.

The Tigers played a game last Thanksgiving Day, defeating Texas A&M pretty easily. Derrius Guice set the LSU single-game rushing record with 285 rushing yards and Danny Etling had his best passing day as a Tiger as the team rolled to a 54-39 victory.

But the real story was what went on behind the scenes during the game. If you’ll remember, most of that game went down while rumors of then-Houston coach Tom Herman agreeing to be LSU’s next head coach were circulating. Multiple media outlets reported it, but LSU wouldn’t confirm any contact had been made. Ultimately, it ended up that Herman was leveraging LSU to get the job at Texas. All of the rumors and stress ended up irrelevant. Two days later, LSU hired Ed Orgeron.

This year, there’s far less stress. So eat your turkey in peace. Enjoy Thanksgiving food as defensive end Rashard Lawrence does. Because this year it is a pure holiday. Love it. You know I do.

Gamble on

According to the folks at OddsShark, LSU is a 10-point favorite against the Aggies on Saturday. That’s a pretty big spread for a game like this, especially with Texas A&M seemingly playing for coach Kevin Sumlin’s job.

Still, LSU’s performance against the Aggies last year should give some confidence to the Tigers. Any time you put up 54 points against your former defensive coordinator, that’s an encouraging sign. And most of the standouts from that game — Etling, Guice, wide receivers Russell Gage, Dee Anderson and DJ Chark — will play Saturday. Those guys have to believe they can repeat their performance from last year.

If you ask me, I think LSU is going to cover. But, as always, don’t base your monetary decisions on me. I’d feel guilty if you lost money following my advice.

Checking in with the ‘croots

Recruiting news never sleeps. Here are some of the latest updates on LSU recruiting, courtesy of SEC Country’s LSU recruiting guru Sam Spiegelman:

Watch me, watch me

The latest edition of Sound Off with Nick and Alex went up Wednesday. This week, we talked about LSU’s likely bowl destinations, injury risks and senior night.

You can watch the video below. And be sure to check back to SEC Country every Wednesday through bowl season for more editions of Sound Off.

In Texas A&M news

The perk of writing for a website like SEC Country is you have coworkers covering every team in the conference. So, as LSU prepares to play Texas A&M on Saturday, here’s a look at some of our site’s coverage of the Aggies.

Insomnia with a capital O

Something about the 2018 LSU Tigers is keeping Ed Orgeron awake. And it’s not quarterback play.

No, Orgeron is excited about Myles Brennan and Lowell Narcisse. As for the men they’ll be handing the ball off to, that’s a different story. Asked about the running back position once Guice and Darrel Williams are gone, Orgeron had this to say:

“It’s something I worry about at night to be honest,” Orgeron said. “Nick Brossette has had excellent practices. Clyde [Edwards-Helaire] is a tremendous back. Lanard [Fournette] has made tremendous improvement. We have two commits. When you lose Leonard [Fournette] and Derrius and Darrel Williams [consecutive years], it’s a challenge. But luckily we have some great backs in the state of Louisiana.”

LSU has been blessed with its recent streak of running backs. And who knows … it might continue next year. But for now, Orgeron isn’t sold.

In LSU basketball news…

Will Wade’s LSU basketball team finished its run at the Maui Invitational on Wednesday night, losing to Marquette 94-84. The loss dropped LSU to 3-2 on the season and 1-2 in the Maui Invitational against marquee opponents Michigan, Notre Dame and Marquette.

Given the way last season went for the Tigers, it was natural to assume they would’ve gone 0-3 against teams like this. The fact that the Tigers beat Michigan and were competitive against Marquette is a huge step forward — especially when the Tigers’ next six games are at home against inferior opponents.

This isn’t a guarantee that LSU will improve in SEC play. But the Tigers can easily slide into conference play with 3 or 4 losses, which puts them in good position to make a little noise at the end of the season.

Miss a previous edition of the Bayou Bengal Briefing? Find every one of SEC Country’s daily LSU football columns right here.