DESTIN, F la . — Maybe he doesn’t exactly mean to, but Les Miles knows how to draw a crowd.
The LSU coach was swamped by reporters and held court for about 20 minutes Wednesday after the Southeastern Conference football coaches wrapped up their meeting with athletic directors here during the SEC Spring Meeting.
Miles touched on a variety of topics, including:
- Brandon Harris’ confidence: Miles said it wasn’t an issue but had an explanation for why Harris’ first career start at Auburn two years ago was such a rocky one.
“Have you ever lined up in your first start against Auburn?” Miles asked a reporter. “On the road? Did you ever do that? I have to be real honest with you, you’d have a problem with that. ‘Oh my God, cadence … oh, man … shoot, just get it out of my hand.’ Imagine the thoughts that would go through your mind.”
- New defensive coordinator Dave Aranda: “He loves to tell players why you do this. He’s a tremendous technician. And he enjoys people. He has a smile on his face most of the time. I think our players will enjoy being coached by him.
“We have a very fast team. We can put a fast linebacker in, a fast defensive back and should have plenty of speed on the flanks to rush the passer. It appears to me to be a very positive transition.”
- On creating a junior pro day: This would likely take place after spring practice, for players about to become juniors to help them make a better informed decision about whether to turn pro early.
“There were 96 people who elected for the draft this year. Thirty of them went undrafted,” Miles said. “We’re searching for better ways to communicate with our players. I think it’s an individual institution’s decision, but I think it’s a pretty good idea. You don’t want to give them misinformation. You don’t want to think they’re going to draft you in the second round and they end up drafting you in the seventh.”
- Satellite camps: Asked if he had tried to keep other SEC schools from having satellite camps in Louisiana, Miles replied, “If I could, we’d hoist small caliber weapons. To be honest, I don’t think that’s possible.”
Talking helmet talk
Commissioner Greg Sankey said league officials talked with SEC football coaches Wednesday about in-helmet communication for quarterbacks. If approved by the NCAA, the technology would be implemented in 2017.
Collaborative instant replay
Coaches were also introduced to elements of the collaborative instant replay system which will be in place for games at SEC stadiums beginning this season.
“They got to walk through some of the communication pieces and how the decisions will be made,” Sankey said.
In the new replay structure, on-site referees will be able to consult with replay officials at the game and SEC headquarters in Birmingham. A test run was made during Alabama’s spring game in April.
“I think it’s very doable,” Miles said after the meeting. “I think it’ll be the best practice. It’ll be an improvement.”
Expanding alcohol sales
Sankey said he expects the subject of expanding in-stadium alcohol sales to be brought up this week. The proposal could be introduced by LSU President F. King Alexander at a meeting of SEC presidents and chancellors.
Currently alcohol sales in SEC stadiums are restricted to club seats and suites.
LSU athletic director Joe Alleva said LSU has long supported the idea, which he says will provide schools with an expanded revenue stream, could help increase attendance and could make fans less likely to drink heavily before entering stadiums and arenas.
That said, Alleva does not expect the proposal to pass this year. Sankey did not offer an opinion.
Follow Scott Rabalais on Twitter, @RabalaisAdv.