LSU coach Les Miles will speak publicly only twice this Wednesday due to the open date this Saturday. Follow his comments here throughout the day.
- Harris on the rise: QB Brandon Harris’ play has been on the
upswing in the last three games, which featured 200-yard, multiple-touchdown performances from the sophomore. Miles said Harris is “where we would like him to be” and that “his leadership has grown by leaps and bounds.”
“He’s very accurate ,very capable, understanding where he’s supposed to throw it. Becoming more pointed to being more wanting to be accurate. A good throw is not good enough anymore. He wants to be very very accurate. I like his improvement, tenacity and leadership around the team. …I think there’s no way you can be the leader without being a real quality participant. You have to go out onto the field and make plays, and you have to care and want. Brandon Harris has that. I don’t think there’s any question that he has improved tremendously.”
- Man of Steele: LSU hired Kevin Steele, formerly Alabama’s linebackers coach, as its new defensive coordinator following the departure of John Chavis this offseason. With the Tigers and Crimson Tide set for a top-10 game Nov. 7, Miles was asked about Steele’s effect on the defense. “Kevin is a quality teacher, very organized,” Miles said. “He gives a perspective about strategical advantage, in my mind. I think there’s the same enthusiasm and speed that has been a part of us for my time.”
- Motivational rusher: Leonard Fournette does more than just make big
plays. Miles indicated the sophomore running back motivates his offensive linemen with his bruising power and electrifying speed. “A quality team is motivated by guys that make plays,” the coach said. “They recognize if they can get him to a level that there’s an opportunity for him to make a play that Leonard makes. I think they see that as a part of every Saturday and a part of their contribution to the team.”
- The next level: The Fournette-centric debate about the NFL changing its rules to allow younger players to enter the draft has quieted down, but Miles was asked for his take on what effect such a change would have on college football. Miles said he thinks there are players that could play with the pros before spending the mandatory three years out of high school, though he reiterated his stance that college is an important time for players to develop mentally and physically.
“I think there’s a style of athlete that can do that. I think they’re rarer because in football, maturity and strength really adds to their worth in what is the next level, the next league. I’m certain that there are those men that come prepared physically and emotionally to be a part of an NFL regimen. There’s just very few of them. …But I think that college football, for the most part, is for young players that need to develop that opportunity.”
MORE LSU FOOTBALL COVERAGE
- Les Miles praises Brandon Harris, Malachi Dupre for helping stranded motorists on Sunday: ‘There’s a lot of real quality people on this team’
- Rabalais: LSU’s hunt for the playoffs begins in earnest, starting with Alabama
- Tuesday with Les: Tigers ‘self-scouting’ during off week before Alabama game