Bret Bielema was greeted by a raucous crowd for his weekly radio show at the Catfish Hole on Thursday night. There was some preliminary discussion about the overtime victory at Ole Miss and the crazy lateral play that set things in motion. But Bielema quickly moved the talk about the trip to LSU.
"The lateral play was just like we drew it up," Bielema said.
Actually, Bielema gave credit to tight end Hunter Henry for knowing in advance that his route would put him short of the first down on the fourth-and-25 play.
"We talk about football IQ, but he knew that he was going to have to make someone miss if the route didn't go to one of the three that were beyond the stakes," Bielema said. "Hunter knew his route wasn't one of those three."
Bielema admits that there were many on the sideline who did not realize that Alex Collins and Dominique Reed ended up beyond the first down stake.
"There were guys on their team and guys on our team that thought the game was over," Bielema said. "I knew instantly that we had the first down. I was busy getting everyone calmed down and telling them how good things were and that we had a chance to win the game."
The trip to Baton Rouge won't be easy, Bielema said. He reminded that LSU has the most players in the NFL from their roster of the last three years.
"They are a very good team," Bielema said. "They have talent, but we are excited to go play them. They are very good at night. Les Miles is 27-2 in games after a loss, but those two were both to Arkansas."
Bielema was asked about the ermergence of wide receiver Dominique Reed.
"He's just scratching the surface of what he is and what he can become," Bielema said. "He's established his niche. Obviously, he's a vertical threat, but Dan Enos has some plays for him as far as runs or screens to get him the ball and utilize his speed
"Really, we have some things that are tough to defend, some combinations in the formation with Dominique and Drew Morgan. There are some three wide configurations, too, with Jared Cornelius back. Then, you add in Alex Collins and Kody Walker, and it can be fun to be an offensive coordinator with those weapons."
Drew Morgan, who leads the SEC in TDs catches, was asked about carrying the load this season. Did he see it coming?
"I was terrified at the beginning of the season," Morgan said. "We had depended on Jonathan Williams to carry the load and here he is with a broken foot. I thought, maybe I'd have to step up. Then, we lose Keon Hatcher, then Jared Cornelius and then Cody Hollister. Then, it really is me.
"I prayed to God to show me the light and he did. I knew then that I had to keep giving the glor to Him. I'm going to continue to do that. I thank God."
Morgan said he was not surprised at the success the offense had at Ole Miss.
"I was comfortable with the game plan and I told that to Coach Enos," Morgan said. "I wasn't even nervous. Our confidence was high."
Kody Walker said the confidence level is still high on the way to Baton Rouge.
"I think it's still clicking for the offense," he said. "We believe in everyone. We think we are going to Baton Rouge to do something different."
Morgan said it's an exciting time with momentum building for another road game.
"I felt like we had our best practices last week," Morgan said. "But that was before this week. Now, I think our best has been this week. It was great on Tuesday and Wednesdaay and today's practice was solid on top of that. It's about knowing your goals and having them memorized. When you do that, you play fast."
Walker said, "Our preparation has been great. Everyone is looking forward and locked in. We know it's going to be a challenge in a great environment, but our guys look forward to it."
Bielema said, "LSU is phenomenal and very talented. You turn on LSU and Alabama last Saturday and you see the champion of the SEC West five of the last eight years. That doesn't happen by chance. They have a tailback who is very gifted. I saw that again last week. They are very good in the offensive line, talented on defense. But we are excited to go play."