A First Look at LSU

CORAL GABLES, Fla. - Miami officially accepted their invitation to the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl on December 30 at 7:30 p.m. to face the LSU Tigers.


Team                #9 Miami       #10 LSU
Scoring Offense    29.3 (43rd)   28.6 (49th) 
Total   Offense     371 (61st)    366 (64th)
Rushing Offense     145 (58th)    140 (69th)
Passing Offense     226 (50th)    226 (49th)

Scoring Defense    11.9 (2nd)    15.2 (8th)
Total   Defense     252 (3rd)     276 (5th)
Rushing Defense     104 (15th)     95 (7th)
Passing Defense     148 (1st)     182 (17th)

Turnover Diff.       +6           -10

"We're very excited about the matchup in this game," said Miami head coach Larry Coker. "We're going to play an outstanding LSU team, and we think it's one of the best matchups of this bowl season. We have said all along we wanted to play the best opponent, and we got that. It's going to be great bowl game and we're going to have to prepare well. We're very excited about this opportunity, and I'm sure our fans will be as excited as well."

The game will be played on Friday, December 30 at 7:30 p.m. on ESPN in front of a national audience.

Gary Stokan, Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl president, stated the game was moved up one day from a year ago because they wanted to play the game in an unopposed time slot.


Although the Miami Hurricanes have not faced LSU since 1988, (Miami won 44-3), they are familiar with their personnel.

LSU has four players on their roster from Miami: WR Dwayne Bowe (Norland HS), LB Ali Highsmith (Central HS), DE Ricky Jean-Francois (Carol City HS), and OL Terrell McGill (Norland HS). All four players were recruited by Miami and had scholarship offers except for Jean-Francois.

Highsmith, who is second on the team in tackles (70), originally signed with Miami in 2003, but never enrolled.

In addition to Bowe, the 'Canes also have ties to recruiting LSU receivers Craig Davis, who actually committed to the 'Canes in 2003, and Early Doucet.

Bowe, Davis, and Doucet are the top three leaders in receiving yards on the Tigers.


Miami defensive backs coach Tim Walton coached at LSU for one season in 2003, when the Tigers won the national championship.

Walton's knowledge of the Tigers players will help the 'Canes in preparing for them.

"We will talk with Coach Walton about some of the guys they have there and he will be able to give us pointers on things they like to do," said senior cornerback Kelly Jennings.

Having Walton able to inform the team on the tendencies will be an asset for the Canes.

"That will be a great key for us," Jennings said. "He has been there and knows who they got. We will be able to prepare better knowing what type of player they are."


Former Miami Hurricane Willis McGahee topped the 1,000-yard rushing mark in yesterday's 24-23 loss to the Miami Dolphins. McGahee currently ranks ninth in the NFL in rushing with 1,029 yards while scoring four touchdowns.

Following the game McGahee, who scored a Miami school-record 28 touchdowns in 2002, discussed his thoughts on the Hurricanes season.

"It was a good season all the way up until the end when we played Georgia Tech," McGahee said. "Losing two games at UM is a losing season, basically."

McGahee added, "In my three years at UM, I lost two games total."

The Miami-LSU matchup was something that did excite McGahee and thinks the team will respond accordingly.

"It is tough watching how the season winded down, but they are going to bounce back. They have good players," McGahee said.


The 'Canes will have an organized workout much like the summer 7-on-7 drills on Thursday and Saturday this week. The coaches will not be there.

The team is set to have their first official bowl practice "probably next Thursday (Dec. 15)," according to Coker.

Christopher Stock is a Senior Editor with CanesTime and can be contacted by emailing him at stock@canestime.com

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