Bayou Bengal Briefing: LSU football’s WR situation is better off than it looks
Welcome to the Bayou Bengal Briefing, SEC Country’s daily morning column covering LSU football, with LSU beat writer Nick Suss. Today we discuss LSU’s future at wide receiver, Jamal Adams, kick off a new Arbitrary Analysis and more. Enjoy!
The Stephen Guidry saga at LSU seems to have come to an end this past weekend, with the JUCO wideout de-committing from the LSU football team. Again. And after taking just two wide receivers in last year’s class, this development looks, on the surface, like it could do major damage to the future of LSU’s receiving corps.
But, as SEC Country recruiting guru Sam Spiegelman pointed out in the link above, LSU is anticipated to take as many as five wideouts for the Class of 2018, and already has one commitment from 3-star wideout Jaray Jenkins. That’s on top of an already young core of targets like sophomores Drake Davis, Dee Anderson, Stephen Sullivan and Derrick Dillon.
If LSU were to reel in a recruiting target like 5-star Terrace Marshall, the No. 1 Class of 2018 recruit in Louisiana, the team might be weirdly in position to have a dominant receiving group. Despite the lack of experience, LSU has all the pieces in place. Davis has been a standout this spring. Anderson and Sullivan are two of the most athletic pass catchers in college football. Freshmen Mannie Netherly and Racey McMath will have the opportunity to sit and wait for a year. And whichever players Ed Orgeron and Co. bring in next year will have the luxury of coming into the second year of Matt Canada’s LSU offense.
Anyway you look at it, this team is inexperienced at receiver. But that inexperience looks like it coincides with an interesting level of raw talent. Enough raw talent, in fact, that LSU might be a passing team, not a running one, after Derrius Guice moves on to the NFL.
This week’s LSU football poll question
Let’s stay on topic for this week’s LSU football poll question. Which LSU football wide receiver do you expect the most from in 2017? Is it incumbent starter D.J. Chark? Is it Davis, the spring standout? Do you have someone else in mind?
Let us know in the poll below. I’ll recap your answers in tomorrow’s Bayou Bengal Briefing.
Arbitrary Analysis, part 1
The LSU football team is on spring break this week. The Bayou Bengal Briefing is not. But that doesn’t mean that I’m not California Dreamin’ of being at the beach like so many LSU students and football players are right now.
Instead, I’ll do the next best thing. This week in the Briefing, I’m counting down my five favorite sitcom beach episodes, grading them based on beachiness, narrative importance, sentimentality and, of course, humor. In order to qualify for the list, all you have to be is an episode of a TV sitcom that took place at the beach.
Today I’ll unveil my No. 5 pick. Check back to the Bayou Bengal Briefing throughout the week for the rest of the list.
No. 5: The Head, the Tail, the Whole Damn Episode (Psych)
It’s hard to single out one episode of Psych as the “beach episode,” given that the show’s Santa Barbara location makes nearly every episode beachfront. But this careful and clever sendup of “Jaws” is the show at its beachiest, and perhaps its most amusing.
In this episode, Detective Lassiter pulls a Shawn and makes an outlandish claim about an unsolved case, coming off as crazy. But this time, Shawn and Lassie agree with one another, forcing an unlikely friendship between the usual nemeses.
If you’re a newcomer to the series, a lot of the jokes in this episode might go over your head. But for longtime fans of the show, this is Psych at its most self-referential and deconstructive. And a great mystery for procedural fans and lovers of Jaws to boot. Give the episode a watch, if for no other reason than the fishing scenes. They’re pretty classic.
Check back to the Bayou Bengal Briefing tomorrow for my No. 4 pick.
Your weekly non-revenue LSU sports recap
While LSU’s other students headed off for spring break, LSU athletes turned out yet another busy weekend of action. Here’s a recap of some of the more significant events.
- The LSU baseball team stole a series victory from Arkansas, wrestling two games away from the Razorbacks. For a complete recap of the weekend and all things LSU baseball, check out my weekly “Out of The Box” column here on SEC Country around noon CT.
- LSU beach volleyball extended its winning streak to 16 straight matches this weekend with a 4-0 performance at the Houston Baptist Invitational. The squad’s wins included sweeps over Houston Baptist and Central Arkansas. As it has been since early March, LSU beach volleyball is likely to remain in the top 10 after this perfect weekend.
- No. 8 LSU softball took one out of three versus No. 12 Alabama in Tuscaloosa this weekend. The series loss dropped LSU to 32-9 on the year and 8-4 in SEC play. The Tigers are 22-2 at home but a combined 10-7 on the road and in neutral-site games.
- It shaped up as a banner Friday and a lackluster Sunday for LSU’s tennis teams this weekend. The men’s team defeated Auburn 5-2 Friday before losing to Mississippi State Sunday, and the women’s team took down Kentucky on Friday but lost to Vanderbilt on Sunday.
- LSU women’s golf didn’t have a great weekend, finishing in 10th place at the PING/ASU Invitational. But freshman Monica Dibildox had a final round to remember, posting an even par 72 that included her first collegiate hole-in-one.
The best around?
Up until a couple of months ago, Jamal Adams might’ve been Louisiana’s best-kept secret. But now that NFL draft season is at its strongest and silliest, experts from across the country are jumping in to heap superlatives on the safety.
Take NFL.com’s Bucky Brooks, for instance. Brooks labeled Adams as not just the top safety, but the top prospect in the 2017 NFL Draft, a mantle usually reserved for former Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett.
Do I get it? Yeah. Adams is a beast. But better than Garrett, or former Alabama linebacker Reuben Foster? That’s where I have to draw a line. Never mind the fact that safeties can’t affect a game the same way a pass-rusher, middle-run-stopper or shutdown corner can defensively. Garrett is the perfect prospect, and Adams still has to answer questions about his ability to cover gifted wide receivers in deep zones, though that is a very minor gripe.
No one has been higher on Adams than me over the last year. I guess that’s changing with Brooks’ assertion. But no matter if you think he’s the best player in the draft or merely top 5, everyone has to admit whichever team grabs him will be one of the luckiest in the NFL.
LSU in the MLB
As per usual, LSU leads a professional league in most active alums. This time it’s Major League Baseball, not the NFL. But either way, with one week of MLB action in the books, let’s look at how some former Tigers have performed this year.
- Two starts into his season, Baltimore Orioles starting pitcher Kevin Gausman still has a 0-0 record. Gausman’s ERA is up at 5.40 and his walk rate is alarmingly high, but it’s still too early to make any judgments about how the rest of his year might shake out.
- Second-year infielder Alex Bregman is off to a rough start for the Houston Astros, working with a .167 batting average and just 1 extra base hit in 24 at-bats. Bregman has yet to drive in a run and has scored only once.
- Bregman’s Astros teammate Will Harris has thrown 3 shutout innings to start the year, allowing just 1 hit in the process.
- Detroit Tigers teammates JaCoby Jones and Mikie Mahtook have started off pretty well. Jones slugged his first MLB home run on Opening Day, driving in 3 runs and stealing 1 base on the afternoon. And Mahtook only has 1 hit on 7 at-bats, but the hit was a double and it drove in a run.
- Philadelphia Phillies starter Aaron Nola made his first start since last summer, earning a win on 6 innings of 3-run ball with 7 strikeouts.
- After a strong Opening Day where he notched 2 hits, including a home run, off Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw, San Diego Padres infielder Ryan Schimpf has cooled down. He’s 3-for-17 on the year with 2 RBI, 1 run scored and 6 walks.
- Journeyman utility infielder Aaron Hill made his San Francisco Giants debut in a big way last week, smacking a home run in his first start. He’s batting .182 thus far (2 for 11).
East Coast, West Coast, Gulf Coast
Two LSU football players — D.J. Chark and Garrett Brumfield — got into one of the most iconic debates in American history yesterday on Twitter. You have the chicken or the egg. You have glass half empty or glass half full. And you have Biggie or Tupac.
That’s exactly what Chark started when he fired off this tweet yesterday afternoon.
Unpopular opinion: Biggie > Tupac
Pac = great rapper not a good song maker.. @thisisbruiser
— DJ Chark (@DJChark82) April 9, 2017
For posterity, Chark tagged Brumfield in the tweet. Brumfield wanted nothing to do with Chark’s take, immediately sending off a litany of defenses for Tupac. Click on the tweet to read the full length of replies and the discussion. But here’s my favorite response from Brumfield, as well as my favorite Chark retort.
— Garrett Brumfield (@thisisbruiser) April 9, 2017
— DJ Chark (@DJChark82) April 9, 2017
So where do you stand? Team Biggie? Team Tupac? Don’t listen to 90s rap? Voice your opinions in the comments below. Or let Chark and Brumfield know you support them by following them on Twitter. Either way, tell them the Bayou Bengal Briefing sent you.
Miss a previous edition of the Bayou Bengal Briefing? Find every one of SEC Country’s daily LSU football columns right here.