Baton Rouge, La.--Auburn will face a first-time starter on Saturday night at Jordan-Hare Stadium as LSU Coach Les Miles announced freshman Brandon Harris as his starter for the No. 15 Tigers. Coming on in relief of starter Anthony Jennings to lead LSU over New Mexico State last Saturday night, Harris has earned the shot according to Miles.
“Brandon Harris came in and gave us a great spark,” Miles said. “The team played well around him. They scored touchdowns on seven possessions and he was 7-7 there. He did a very nice job and threw the ball well. He made good decisions. It stands to reason that he would get first snaps in the next game.”
Playing in all five games this season Harris has completed 23-30 passes for for 394 yards and six touchdowns with just one interception. When you throw in 106 yards rushing and three touchdowns on just 16 attempts you have a true weapon for the LSU offense and one that has earned his spot by making good decisions.
“He just did the things we asked him to do,” Miles said. “That’s honestly all he needs to do, make quality decision with the ball and function the offense. He took a miss-snap, a bad snap, and scored. There is some ad-lib to his game that is very, very positive. He’s a guy that really is fast and can really throw the ball. You put him in a quality position to extend a play and some good things can happen.”
In his first season playing college football, Harris will now have to take his game to a tough environment on the road at night against the No. 5 team in the country. While he said they still plan to use Jennings for a series here or there or in a special situation, Miles said they’ll prepare Harris to be the guy this week and that means just taking care of his job.
“I think the scheduling of plays and making sure you format a script and that everybody understands what is expected,” Miles answered when asked how to avoid his freshman from being overwhelmed on the road. “That’s what he did last Saturday. He just took the plays we gave him and did just what we ask him to do. If he just handles it that way I think he’ll be fine.”
Auburn counters with a defense that is allowing just 16.2 points per game this season, sixth in the SEC. Auburn's 313.2 yards of total offense allowed is fourth in the league with the Tigers giving up just 90.8 yards on the ground.Kickoff for Saturday night’s game at Jordan-Hare Stadium is scheduled for 6 p.m. The game can be seen on ESPN.