The LSU Tigers are always an SEC powerhouse. Plain and simple. Regardless of what has happened or will happen, that will always be the case because of the slew of talented players in the state of Louisiana who flock to Baton Rouge once they finish their illustrious high school careers. However, LSU will need those talented young players to develop quickly in 2013 to stay near the top of the college football world.
LSU has always prided itself on playing solid defense, but that will be tough in 2013 with the departure of safety Eric Reid, cornerback Tharold Simon, defensive linemen Barkevious Mingo, Bennie Logan, Sam Montgomery and linebacker Keviin Minter. So literally half of LSU’s solid 2012 defense will not return for 2013. See what I mean about all of that young talent being ready to contribute early?
On offense, Tigers quarterback Zach Mettenberger was decent in his junior year, but he absolutely must become an asset for this team in 2013 instead of just some who takes the snap on every play. He’s losing running backs Spencer Ware and Michael Ford, so that means the Tigers’ offense will likely have to rely more on the passing game in 2013 to remain successful.
This is a team that plays with a ton of emotion, so any lack of talent and/or depth can be made up during big moments, but LSU can’t rely on that. Alabama was clearly the better team in 2012, but LSU outplayed the Crimson Tide in their meeting and almost won that game. Those almost-type games must be finished off in 2013 for the Tigers to be successful and that will require execution by players like Mettenberger.