NEPD Staff Writer: Mike Loyko
For the second straight week I will be scouting LSU as they are one of the nationally televised games this week. Here is who I will be watching on both the Tigers and Mountaineers.
Instead of doing an “In the Film room” breakdown of LSU following the Mississippi State game I figured I would wait and combine my notes from that game, with the WVU game to get a more comprehensive breakdown of LSU. One thing is certain they have some playmakers on defense and most of them are underclassmen.
#11 OLB Bruce Irvin- Irvin is one of the best pass rushers in the country. In his first season in Morgantown he posted 14 sacks, despite only playing in obvious passing situations. At 6’3”245 Irvin is more than likely an OLB convert at the next level. I will be watching Irvin’s instincts, how he takes on blocks, and how he holds up against the run. I want to see if he will be anything more than a sub package pass rusher at the next level.
#12 QB Geno Smith (Jr.) – Geno Smith is emerging as a legit Quarterback prospect for the 2013 NFL Draft. Right now he is more of an athlete than pocket passer, but I have really been impressed with the way he has thrown the ball in Dana Holgorsen’s wide open passing offense. I will be watching to see how Smith goes through his reads, his footwork and his ball placement.
#97 DE Julian Miller- Miller has been overshadowed while at WVU, while Bruce Irvin gets all the national attention, all Miller has done in the past two seasons is rack up 28 TFL and 18 sacks. Miller is one of the more productive DE in the nation and I will be watching him closely to see how disruptive he can be.
#1 WR Tavon Austin (Jr.) – The diminutive but electric slot receiver is a threat every time he gets the ball in his hands. WV tries to get the ball to Austin any way they can, whether it be receiving, running or returning. I want to see how Austin can impact the game against the best defense in America.
On the LSU side I will be watching the same players closely whom I watched during the Mississippi State game. I will wait for my film review to get into details, however I will say CB Morris Claiborne has improved his stock as much if not more so than any player I have watched this year. He has stepped in flawlessly for Patrick Peterson and played equally as well.
Players we will be watching on LSU: (previewed here)
#17 CB Morris Claiborne, #7 CB Tyrann Mathieu, # 2 WR Rueben Randle, #1 S Eric Reid, #6 Craig Loston, # 49 DE Barkevious Mingo, #89 DE Lavar Edwards