Tigers don full pades Wednesday

With LSU winning a national title and all, the Tiger football program is finally on the map – and it showed on Wednesday.

ESPN's Kirk Herbstreit and a camera crew were at practice Wednesday afternoon taking a peek into the spring drills of the defending national champions. Upon arrival, Herbstreit and Saban chatted it up before ESPN "miked up" the LSU head coach for a special feature to be aired at a later date."


As for workouts, it was the first day the Tigers donned full pads.


"It was tough out there at practice in that it was the first day in pads," Saban said. "I do not care how much you worked out or what you do, you have to get used to carrying the pads again and you have to get used to hitting again."


Saban sensed a bit of fatigue more than halfway through the first full workout - and rightfully so. After spending the entire offseason in the weight room, the Tigers are bulkier now than they were at the end of the season.


"I thought we got tired out there about halfway through practice, maybe two-thirds of the way through and maybe got a little sluggish," Saban said. "I think that is to be expected. It is certainly not an excuse and we are not going to use it as an excuse because the way we do things, we need to do them for the whole practice and push ourselves to get better."


A few tidbits around practice, boy oh boy have some of the guys bulked up. Marcus Randall is tipping the scales at a hefty 237 while JaMarcus Russell is a weighty 248. Skyler Green is built like a fullback weighing somewhere in the neighborhood of 210.


Amp Hill looked much better than he did on Saturday actually sunning some pretty sharp routes. However, he still is a bit gimpy.


Cameron Vaughn, Jarrod Carter and Dominic Cooper were still shrouded in red jerseys while Demetri Robinson and Bull Hurley were present but not dressed.


Visitors Wednesday included the football team from Mary Montgomery High School in Mobile, Ala. as well as signees Luke Sanders and Early Doucet. Michael Clayton also showed up for a bit – and wearing an Atlanta Falcon shirt? Hmmm….


Taking a quick peek at some defensive back drills, Corey Webster and Travis Daniels will no doubt form the most imposing cornerback duo in all of college football in the fall. Watch out for Mario Stevenson as well, he is a bit raw but a stud.


LaRon Landry looks like a seasoned veteran and players like Jonathan Zenon, Daniel Francis and Nick Child appear ready to step into active roles. Jesse Daniels was not dressed out Wednesday, but was seen instructing with some of the walk-ons.


Got our first up-close look at defensive tackle Claude Wroten, the heir apparent to Chad Lavalais on the defensive line. Let's just say this, in a word – impressive.


"The big thing that you do not want allow the players to do is to give in mentally before they go physically," Saban said. "That means you do not have enough mental toughness to persevere. Things have to be hard for you to develop the type of persistence to overcome adversity and the kind of things that we will most certainly have to do during the course of the season. Today was just a good lesson in that. I was not disappointed in the way we practiced but it was not what we need for the whole practice. I think it was largely because the players were not used to carrying those pads around."

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