LSU defense shines in second scrimmage
BATON ROUGE - Another strong defensive effort highlighted LSU's second scrimmage of the spring here Saturday as the Tigers reached the halfway point of spring practice with a 130-play workout at the Charles McClendon Practice Facility.
Saturday's scrimmage started outside but after about 30 minutes rain showers chased the Tigers indoors where the remainder of the workout took place.
LSU coach Les Miles said the scrimmage focused on first-and-10 situations as well as various third-down opportunities. The scrimmage also featured several series when the No. 1 offense faced the No. 1 defense. The quarterbacks were "live" while the team scrimmaged outside, but were switched to green "tag off" jerseys when the team went indoors.
"I felt like the defense really started out fast and played hard for most of the day," Miles said. "One thing that is obvious about that defense is that it's fast to the ball. I thought they had a better day than the offense.
"Both quarterbacks are continuing to come along, but today (Anthony) Jennings looked a little more productive overall. Leonard Fournette continues to run hard and I think the offensive line played well. Coach Grimes is doing a good job of getting young guys in positions that they need to be in and moving them around. They are getting a lot of work there."
Miles said Jennings threw a pair of touchdown passes during the scrimmage and that he looked sharp in the passing game.
"He was crisp with his passes," Miles said of Jennings. "He threw a couple of touchdown passes. Brandon made some pretty big plays with both his feet and his arm. He wasn't as productive. When you get to the film and rotate guys, you wonder was the route the exact way it was supposed to be, do we have a protection issues, and all of those pieces you put together once you get film study. I think Brandon is more capable than what he showed today."
Other offensive standouts during the scrimmage according to Miles were wide receiver D.J. Chark, who caught a pair of touchdown passes, along with wide receiver Travin Dural, who hauled in a TD.
"One thing about D.J. (Chark) is that he has speed and ability," Miles said. "He's improving each time he steps on the field. He done a nice job of catching the football. I think our wide receiver group as a whole has improved. They are working hard and pushing each other. That's a talented group."
Defensively, Miles singled out the play of tackles Christian LaCouture and Davon Godchaux along with linebacker Kendell Beckwith and safety Rickey Jefferson.
Saturday's scrimmage capped a busy three days for LSU football as the Tigers held their annual coaching clinic this week which was highlighted by featured speaker and NFL Hall of Famer Michael Irvin. Nearly 450 high school coaches from across the state and region were in attendance.
"We had another great clinic," Miles said. "Our coaching staff did a great job and I think the high school coaching community really enjoyed their visit to LSU and got a lot out of the clinic. Michael Irvin was a treat. He was exactly what the high school coaches needed to hear. When he came in, he gave a similar presentation to our players, but when the players asked questions he rose to another level. He really just did a great job. Paul Alexander (Bengals offensive line coach) was another guy who was spectacular presenter and Pete Jenkins (former LSU assistant coach) did a magnificent job. It was a lot of fun. It was very busy, very hectic. Just the way it was supposed to be."
The Tigers will return to practice on Tuesday for the first of three workouts next week. LSU will have its third scrimmage next Saturday. Spring practice concludes on April 18 at 1 p.m. when LSU holds the National L-Club Spring Game in Tiger Stadium. Admission to the game is free.