The Tigers (8-5, 5-3 Southeastern Conference in 2002) will hold four weeks of workouts starting on March 17. The NCAA limits teams to 15 practice sessions, which includes the final spring scrimmage. The Tigers will hold their annual split-squad showdown on April 11 at 5 p.m. in Tiger Stadium.
Storylines Tiger Rag will be following this spring include the possible renewal of the battle for the starting quarterback position. Matt Mauck won the job last season and led LSU to a 5-1 start before suffering a season-ending foot injury late in the Tigers' win against Florida.Marcus Randall took Mauck's place and was part of LSU's wins against South Carolina, Kentucky and Ole Miss.
LSU must replace its top two running backs from last season following the end of Domanick Davis' eligibility and LaBrandon Toefield's decision to enter the NFL draft after his junior season. Davis was also the backbone of the Tigers' return teams and left LSU with a host of all-purpose records.
The Tigers are also looking for replacements at wide receiver with Jerel Myers and Reggie Robinson no longer available. Michael Clayton will remain the go-to player here, but he is expected to continue his cross-training as a defensive back.
Devery Henderson was LSU's big play receiver before breaking his arm against Ole Miss. He is expected to return at 100 percent, and Skyler Green is back after filling in admirably in Henderson's absence.
The question will be who takes over as the No. 4 receiver, and it may not be answered until the fall when a host of talented newcomers arrive on campus.
The Tigers are solid on the offensive line, having only to replace guard Rob Sale. Rudy Niswanger is projected to inherit the role, but the coaching staff will look to get a bunch of redshirt freshmen into the mix among the first two teams.
Defensively, LSU has big shoes to fill at middle linebacker with four-year starter Bradie James gone. Jason LeDoux was his back-up last year, but a possible shuffling might take place to get more experienced athletes on the field.
The Tigers also have to replace strongside linebacker Jeremy Lawrence, and a number of untested players could be tried at this designated pass rusher position.
In the secondary, LSU needs a strong safety to take over for Norman LeJeune and a corner to replace Demetrius Hookfin. Adrian Mayes stands out as someone who could help the Tigers at safety, while a few redshirt freshmen will probably get into the mix at corner, on the second unit or as nickel and dime backs.
Special teams are also searching for a big replacement with place kicker John Corbello out of the picture. Walk-on Andre' Boagni has a chance to assert himself in spring practice before true freshman Chris Jackson goes on scholarship in the fall.
Tiger Rag will post same-day reports on all 15 sessions of spring practice, along with comments from head coach Nick Saban and the Tigers following scheduled interview opportunities.
LSU SPRING PRACTICE SCHEDULE
March 17, 18, 20, 22 Week 2:
March 24, 26, 28, 29 Week 3:
March 31, April 2, 4, 5 Week 4:
April 7, 8, 11
Spring Game: April 11, 5 p.m. Tiger Stadium
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