What makes you guys so upset about this one? I'll preface this post by saying I logged on and haven't read hardly any other threads, save for McDltSt.Louie's response on Crawfish's thread that I not start my own. Obviously, he's got some type of issue beyond that of being not happy with a win over a mediocre team, but we'll deal with that on "another talk show". Here and now, my thoughts on the game... What the heck happened to Marcus Randall? He got one series, and I didn't hear on the radio if he was injured or perhaps sprained an earlobe or some other reason why he only made one appearance in the game. I'm not saying that Marcus would have put 45 points up at the helm of the Tiger offense, but I was just wondering... Quarterbacks: More of the same from this position. JaMarcus has not improved one iota with his reads, his progressions, looking off, or his under the gun decision making. He has now been in the program for the better part of two years, and we are still seeing true freshman mistakes. It's disheartening to see this kid carry the ball like a plastic cup of beer at Reggie's in Tigerland. He does not protect the ball, he does not throw with touch, he does not look downfield when scrambling 8 out of 10 times, and he is - at this point in time - a bust as an LSU quarterback. He has not yet become more comfortable with experience, and the wonder from this camp will be what happens in a bowl game when a good football team comes up who will STUFF the run and force the Tigah's to beat them through the air? Methinks a 2nd bowl loss for LSU, in this man's humble opinion. Running Backs: From Broussard's record setting performance to Joseph Addai's 100+ yard performance (107, I think it was), even Justin Vincent and Hester got some carries and positive yardage. I think that the offensive line (detailed later) did yeoman's work to help the Tiger mail carriers to seriously embarass the Ole Miss run defense. Wideouts: Wouldn't be too bad, if they were thrown to when open. Dwayne Bowe-much like JaMarcus Russell-has regressed in terms of development from Oregon State to now. He's a prototypical NFL bodied wideout, but he is sure to drop anything thrown to him these days. It's mental. He'll push through. Perhaps not this season, but along with Vincent, Livings, Russell and others, he'll have something to prove this offseason. Offensive line: A mixed back. Absolutely obliterated Ole Miss in run blocking. There was one play in the North End Zone - at about 5:58 in the 3rd quarter - where Andrew Whitworth blocked his man -literally- 20 yards downfield, then deposited his man into the Tiger Stadium turf, walked off, and then had a breather as the game stopped because of an injury to the man he blew downfield. It was an amazing tour de force-from a run blocking standpoint. Pass Pro, again, was terrible. Whitworth was called for holding less than he actually did, and Nate Livings when he was forced back out to Right Tackle again looked like the neighborhood nerd cornered by the cool kids. He was punked out and my worst fear from last week was realized when Johnson was hurt and they threw him back out to the wolves. He is a Guard. Period. Defense: A Tale of Two Halves Defensive line: Played well early, played well late, but kind of drifted in the middle. Marcus had a good game, and Oliver & Wroten both had some good shots at Robert Lane and Flatt (What happened to Spurlock?), but all in all, they effectively limited the Ole Miss offense. Remember guys, one touchdown was the result of a long special teams return of a kickoff (another disappointment), and one score was a pick-6 by Russell (his only scoring toss of the night, if I'm not mistaken), so all in all, minus the bogus FG at the end of the half, this defense gave up about two drives, period. 17 points were beyond their control, if you ask me. Linebackers: Can't cover the underneath and the flat passes. This has been the same since early '03. Bottom line, this is a leak that was visible last year but didn't slow the boat down...This year, it's still a leak, and is picked on like Prometheus' back each night by opposing teams... Defensive backs: Webster & Travis Daniels continue their snakebitten '04 seasons. They face guard far too long, don't turn around to make plays on the ball, and they are responsible or "good for" at least 2-3 interference penalties per game. My father said it best against Alabama on one long pass play..."That looked like 'Hook-fear' right there." Enough said. Jesse Daniels & LaRon Landry ensure that our run support and future at safeties are ensured. Landry will be a threat to leave after next year at the current pace, and Daniels showed his ball breaking skills and concentration levels are beautiful. I believe last night he should have had three picks, and ended up with two (One play was called pass interference early on). Coaching: Inexplicable. I will credit Jimbo for calling the deep routes tonight. Why it took till the 10th game of the year to give Russell the green light to look vertical, I don't know why. Moving Livings to Tackle is like moving Bennie Brazell to wideout to spark the passing offense. Remove the fact our QB can't get it to them, and the wrap on Bennie is that he's fast, he can run great routes, he just can't catch to save his life. Livings is an offensive lineman, but as a tackle, he certainly lives up to the adjective I used to describe what type of lineman he is. It's utterly offensive. Why we continue to push him out there is beyond me. Overall though, I saw perhaps the greatest lack of mental focus of the season by LSU. We play with intensity, and we play with toughness. We don't play with clarity of mind and focus though. Totally sloppy. When mental focus isn't there, say what you like, but that's on the staff. It all boils down to the staff. If their heads aren't in the game, that's on the staff. As much as we laud Saban for the "next game on our schedule is the most important one on our schedule" mantra, when we are playing with no mental focus, that is laid at the staff's feet as well. Saban and Co. are to be commended for putting this team into contention for only the 7th 10-win season in LSU history with such a bare pallet to work with at the most important position on the offensive side of the ball. If they can close the season with two more wins, in Little Rock and in their bowl game, this will be the 3rd 10-win season of the Saban Era, and also the third in the last 4 years. A wonderful season, and a great coaching job, by any stretch. Consistent top-flight success is all anyone can ask for around Tiger Town. But, questions still linger...What would have happened had Saban had Marcus take the field on the 2nd drive against Auburn...What would have happened if JaMarcus Russell never saw the field in Jordan Hare Stadium...Would Marcus have maintained his Joe Montana/Michael Vick impersonation? Would the LSU offense ground Auburn to a pulp? Would we be looking at a vastly different outcome in that game? Would that have changed our season? Of course, all those questions are just counterproductive, and all hypothetical...but in this Tiger fan's mind...They linger.