This is a 12-part daily series counting down the days until LSU football begins spring practice on Sunday.
Days until spring: 3
Returning receivers who've caught at least 10 college passes: 3
And you thought LSU returned little production at receiver last season. The experience and returning production this season is so low that a transfer, Jonathan Giles, is expected to immediately start at the position.
For a second straight year, the Tigers lost their top two wideouts. In spring, LSU will have eight scholarship receivers on the roster, with three more joining over the summer. Let's take a look at the eight and their career production.
*potential redshirt for 2017
Last season, LSU listed three receiver positions on its depth chart. More often than not, they played just two. That could change this season from the way coach Ed Orgeron and offensive coordinator Steve Ensminger tell it. The coaches have preached a three and four-receiver set, using more of a standard one-back formation.
So who are those top three or four receivers? You can pencil in at least one: Giles. Orgeron proclaimed him in January as a starter, a fast, strong player who's biggest strength is what you'd like in a receiver - he catches the ball.
The other two spots will likely be more of a rotation. Members of that rotation will depend a lot on spring practice, summer workouts and preseason camp. The top candidates are returning guys who showed flashes last season: Derrick Dillon and Stephen Sullivan.
Dillon developed into QB Danny Etling's go-to third-down wideout, running crisp routes and hardly if ever dropping a pass. Sullivan evolved into a deep threat, averaging nearly 20 yards a pop, and his 6-6 frame proved tough to guard.
Notes on a golf scorecard while eagerly waiting for March to go mad …
Dee Anderson and Drake Davis seem to be on the next rung. The two have shown flashes, but they've not consistently played. Anderson spent most of last spring watching drills from the sideline, a coach's decision, and he missed the first portion of last season. Davis' 2017 season went in opposite fashion. He exploded for the first few games before his playing time was significantly trimmed.
Young guys Justin Jefferson and Racey McMath have a fight on their hands for any playing time, though coaches showed their trust in Jefferson late last season, even giving him a jet sweep.
The real wild card at this position is Terrace Marshall, the highly touted 2018 signee who enrolled in January. He's expected to participate in spring practice, though he's not 100 percent recovered from a severe ankle injury he suffered last fall. Many around the program expect him to see serious playing time in 2018.
LSU has spent the past two decades catching up to its Southeastern Conference brethren in a facilities arms race that has swept through colleg…
Countdown to LSU spring practice
- 12: number of starters lost from 2017
- 11: number of LSU D-linemen in spring
- 10: combined number of college seasons for Ed Paris and John Battle
- 9: where Johnathan Giles' 2016 season ranked all-time at Texas Tech
- 8: combined regular season starts for returning O-tackles and centers
- 7: fully healthy mid-year enrollees expected to participate in spring
- 6: combined games played by QB Myles Brennan
- 5: scholarship inside linebackers in spring
- 4: TE Foster Moreau's touchdowns
- 3: returning receivers who’ve caught at least 10 college passes