Tuberville Names Starter?

Giving all three quarterbacks a chance to compete before naming the starter for LSU, <b>Tommy Tuberville</b> said Wednesday that the decision has been made. Sort of. Also, a look at who stood out in an impressive practice session at the stadium.

Auburn, Ala.—Wednesday afternoon, after practicing for two hours inside Jordan-Hare Stadium in rock concert type conditions with music and crowd noise blaring from the jumbotron at the south end of the stadium, Tommy Tuberville named freshman Jason Campbell his probable starter for Saturday's game against the LSU Tigers.

With Campbell, Daniel Cobb and Jeff Klein all sharing time with the first and second-team offensive units in Wednesday's practice, the coaching staff had another chance to see all in action before making a decision on the starter. While it's not set in stone, Tuberville said that the redshirt freshman has done enough to warrant another look as the starter.

"I've picked a quarterback for now," he said. Wednesday night after practice. "Jason Campbell will be our starting quarterback unless I change my mind before Saturday. Right now he's our starting quarterback. Right now there's not a lot of difference in any of them. We feel like it's time to get him back out and see what he can do. We hope he learned a lot from the sideline and see what happens. He's looked good in practice everyday as well as Daniel. Hopefully, they can do well and move the team, make some first downs and score some points."

Tommy Tuberville and Jason Campbell at Wednesday's practice in Jordan-Hare Stadium.

Because of the relative lack of experience in hostile environments for both Campbell and Cobb, the coaching staff decided to make the practice conditions a little tougher Wednesday by playing playing loud music (very loud) and crowd noise for much of the two-hour workout. Getting a chance to work on hand signals on both sides of the ball and silent counts on offense, the Tigers had a good day both offensively and defensively without being able to hear anything outside of a few feet for much of the day.

"It was kind of loud inside the stadium," Tuberville noted. "We had the crowd noise tonight to try to show our quarterbacks and guys in the huddle how we have to communicate. I thought it went well. We had another good practice. The guys are spirited and the weather is helping out a little bit. Being in the stadium has helped but I think it has dawned on them what they're getting ready to go in to. A chance to get back to Atlanta is enough to really make you work hard but there are a lot of other incentives here. I'm proud of the way they've practiced and worked hard."

Going through the offensive and defensive game plans with a fine-toothed comb, the coaching staff continues to emphasize aggressiveness on both sides of the ball. That is something that was sorely missing during the Alabama game but should be present again this week. One reason for that is the return of Brandon Johnson to a more active role on the offensive side of the ball. Used as both a linebacker and fullback since the Mississippi State game, the sophomore said that he hopes the move pays dividends for the team this week.

"In a sense I think it does make us more physical," he said about his move back to fullback. "I'm not saying I make it more physical, but we may run some more play action and keep them off-balance a little more in the 'I' rather than the one-back. But we'll probably be a little more smash-mouth as far as running goes…it means a lot to me to get back to playing fullback. I'm glad to be back on the offensive side to throw some blocks and maybe get the ball a couple of times."

With one chance for all the marbles in the Western Division, both Auburn and LSU should come out clawing and scratching for the trip to Atlanta. Expecting to be one of the more physical and exciting games of the SEC season, Johnson said this is what it's all about when you decide to play major college football.

"This is something you dream about as a kid," he said. "Just being in a situation like we're in, this is almost as big a game as you will find. It can send us to the SEC Championship or it can send us home."

Marcel Willis catches the football Wednesday evening at Jordan-Hare Stadium.

Kickoff for Saturday night's showdown in Baton Rouge is set for 6:45 and can be seen nationally on ESPN. The winner earns the right to represent the SEC's Western Division in the Championship game one week later in the Georgia Dome against the winner of the Florida-Tennessee game, also played Saturday in Gainesville.

Tiger Ticket Extra: With songs from the LSU band, AC/DC, Guns 'N Roses, Ozzy Ozbourne, James Brown and many other artists, the Auburn team got a chance to practice in simulated noise conditions for the first time in the Tuberville Era. While it is known that the offense needs to be on the same page when the noise level is up, Tuberville said they also did this for the defense as well. Needing to communicate with each other on the run because of LSU's wide variety of offensive sets, the defense worked on hand signals as well and the coach said it went really well…Looking good Wednesday on offense was running back Casinious Moore. Slashing through the defense and reading his blocks extremely well, Moore continues to look like a sure bet to receive more playing time this Saturday. Defensively, Karlos Dansby made several big plays in the secondary and he will play a big role against LSU because of his ability to play both the run and the pass. If Dansby has a good game, you can be assured that the Tiger defense will have a solid performance.

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