Kendell Beckwith thinks for a few seconds before answering the question.
Just how healthy, percentagewise, is he?
“A strong 87,” Beckwith said with a smile.
Beckwith, LSU’s prized starting middle linebacker, plans to spend the next two months resting his injured left knee before summer workouts begin in June. Meanwhile, offensive lineman Will Clapp is scheduled for surgery on his hip Thursday, his father, Tommy, said.
Clapp, a rising redshirt sophomore and starting guard, is battling a labrum injury in his hip, similar to the one doctors surgically repaired for Ethan Pocic in January but less severe, Tommy Clapp said. Pocic missed spring practice while recovering from the surgery.
Will Clapp is expected to be cleared by the time preseason camp starts in August, but he might miss some summer workouts, Tommy Clapp said. Will Clapp is also battling a sports hernia, as coach Les Miles revealed two weeks ago. Surgery on the hernia could also transpire Thursday.
Beckwith, a rising senior who participated fully with the first string during Saturday’s spring game at Tiger Stadium, donned a wrap on his left knee for support. He continues to recover from what many at first thought was a serious injury.
Beckwith collapsed during LSU’s third practice of spring ball. Practice was momentarily stopped while he lay on the ground. Trainers assisted him off the field.
The exact diagnosis, he said, is a lateral collateral ligament injury. The LCL is one of four primary ligaments connecting the femur (upper leg bone) with the tibia and fibula (lower leg bones) The others are the ACL, MCL and Patella ligament.
The LCL is located on the outside part of the knee and, specifically, connects the fibula to the femur. Beckwith said he does not need a procedure and that it’s an injury that only needs rest.
He plans to give it just that ahead of a highly anticipated final year.
“I can rest it now. The type of injury it was, it’s got to heal over time,” he said. “I feel like I’ll be good in another week or two.”
Beckwith missed six spring practices over a three-week period, returning April 5, but he participated in meetings, such as when new coordinator Dave Aranda installed his 3-4 scheme. Among players on the front seven, Beckwith said his role might be changing the least of any.
“The terminology was different, but once we got the hang of that, we were rolling,” Beckwith said. “It’s just technique. (Aranda) really coaches hard on technique.”
Leonard Fournette needs to lose some weight.
At least that’s what Miles thinks. After Saturday’s spring game, Miles said.
“Leonard Fournette’s got to trim up,” the coach said. “For him to get the speed he’s capable of, I think he needs to be lighter.”
This isn’t the first time Miles has suggested, publicly, that Fournette is too heavy. Last summer, Miles indicated that his star running back needed to lose weight.
Fournette is listed on LSU’s roster at 230 pounds.
Jazzing it up
Jazz Ferguson, a 6-5, 215-pound sophomore, caught four passes for 22 yards Saturday, the most receptions of any LSU receiver.
It’s not by coincidence. Miles said the staff is purposely feeding Ferguson the ball. The West Feliciana product evolved into LSU’s No. 3 receiver by the end of the spring. With Travin Dural out, Ferguson, Malachi Dupre and D.J. Chark were in on LSU’s three-receiver sets.
“We’re kind of turning to Jazz and seeing what he wants to get accomplished,” Miles said. “We’re putting it in front of him. He’s got to do the work in the classroom, got to do the work on the field. He’s very talented. I think he can give us a lot.”
Ferguson played in two games last year.
Kicker and punter
LSU’s kicker and punter duties appear to be secure.
Senior Trent Domingue booted LSU’s only field-goal attempt Saturday, a 42-yarder. And Josh Growen made the only two punts, kicks of 37 and 45 yards.
“Our punter looks like he’s going to be able to step into Tiger Stadium and kick it,” Miles said of Growden, a redshirt freshman who would be LSU’s third consecutive Australian-born starting punter.
“I don’t take lightly that Trent Domingue steps into Tiger Stadium and kicks a 42-yard field goal,” Miles added.
Cameron Gamble kicked off for LSU, the only kicker to do so.
Williams battling injury
LSU running back Darrel Williams carried the ball just three times Saturday.
There’s a reason behind that, Miles said: He’s hurt.
The junior running back is battling an ankle injury, and coaches minimized his carries.
“We didn’t want to extend him (Saturday),” Miles said. “He had an ankle (injury) at the back end of spring. Probably could have lit up the spring game. Get him healthy and our football team becomes much better football team.”
— Follow Ross Dellenger on Twitter, @RossDellenger.