Back on the road

Just one week after their most lopsided loss in six years, the LSU Tigers hit the road again. For a team lacking experience at crucial positions such as quarterback and cornerback, it seems a home date would go a long way to restoring confidence and composure.

Instead, LSU will travel to Columbia’s Williams-Brice Stadium, home of the South Carolina Gamecocks. Although it does not have the reputation of Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, Williams-Brice is everything you’d expect from an SEC venue, with a record capacity of 85,000.

“It’s not necessarily a letdown or a setback, but a challenge,” said senior defensive tackle Marlon Favorite. “When you go out on the road and lose a game, you look forward to the next week. But the fact that the crowd will be working against us again just makes you want to work harder”

Favorite is one of a handful of veterans on a defense that finds itself coping with a beating it has not had to deal with often. Favorite said the team’s good and bad experiences on the road this season will go a long way toward seasoning the youngsters.

“Our first road game was a hard fight and a win, the next one was obviously a devastating loss,” he said. “Now you just have to look forward to retaliation on the next opponent, and make all the corrections from past games. Me being one of the older guys, that’s what I’ve been sharing with my younger teammates.”

Favorite said he and the other veterans have been keeping an eye on how a 51-21 loss has affected the team’s morale.

“Some guys are a little upset, and that’s natural,” he said. “You come to a national championship team and you’re used to having winning seasons … so you know they want to bounce back right away and you can see it in their expressions. And me being a guy that’s been on teams that have lost bad to Georgia, and gone out on the road and lost, it’s just all about that next game.”

On the other side of things, it seems the offense isn’t concerned with another road trip. In fact, it seems to relish the opportunity.

Offensive tackle Ciron Black and his fellow linemen paved the way for a rushing attack that gained only 80 yards against the Gators. For a program coached by a former offensive lineman, Black said the effort was nowhere near good enough.

 “The coaches are mad at you, but you’re really more mad at yourself when you have to come back to the sideline and tell them you missed a block,” he said. “We’re going to get back to smash-mouth football and like coach Miles said, we’re just going to go.”

Black is looking forward to the trip to South Carolina. He said it gives the Tigers a chance to prove themselves after last week’s debacle.

“Me, myself, honestly I really like [going back on the road],” Black said. “I want to show America what we can do on the road. I’ve heard around town that we can’t play on the road, and that we don’t know what to do with the crowd noise, well I want to show them. I don’t mind going out in front of their crowd where it’s noisy, because we’re going to show them how we play football.”


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