At first consideration, there is considerable consternation concerning this week's competitor. Not a great deal is known about the Bulldogs of Louisiana Tech University. They are a fellow inhabitant of the state. We haven't played all that much. When we do, it's forgotten by LSU fans as boring and a walk over and repressed by Tech fans as physically discomforting and embarassing. Several of LSU's most lopsided scores have Tech as the victim.
Don't take too dim a view of this hapless school. Louisiana Tech is younger than the Fighting Tigers Football squad. I can't expect much out of a school that didn't exist back when Dr. Charles Coates was overseeing the LSU squad against Tulane. So what is there to talk about? Well take heart dear reader, I was born and raised in Ruston, home of the Dawgs. This may provide some insightful commentary and analysis of our foe.
As most any American, red-blooded male will recite the wisdom taught by GI Joe, "knowing is half the battle." Indeed. To learn about and understand your foe is to learn their weaknesses, respect their strengths, prevail in the end. And what do I know of Tech that can get us half way home?
1. They just recently approved liquor and wine sales inside the city limits. Bars still close at midnight, but you can get the fire water anywhere now. To pass this little bit of self government, they had to put it to a vote. Our law requires that you put all options on the ballot: keep things as they are, allow liquor sales, or BAN IT ALL OUTRIGHT. Nothing wrong you say. Well, the Ban It option put up a significant percentage of the final vote.
How does this relate to football Joshua? Tangentially at best I must say. But any town as boring and deadening as Ruston needs hard drinking. If Tech is to become a serious program, they need the type of bar brawls that only Wild Turkey 101 and Jagr can fuel. And that society is in its infancy when it comes to this essential ingredient of young adulthood week nights and fan fun on Saturdays. I cannot take a team of this character seriously.
2. I am worried about injuries not for LSU, but for Tech. You see, folks in Ruston like things quiet and staid. The football games there are sparsely attended and even less vigorously supported by those in attendance. The sheer noise of Tiger Stadium on an average to sub par night this coming Saturday might cause bleeding from the ears and nasopharyngeal passages, stroke, shock, heart attack, water on the brain, aneurisms and hurt feelings for the Bull Dogs. Their fans will be even worse off because of this rude and nasty feature of Tiger Stadium.
As for the match of the teams, Sun Tzu said, "Warfare is the way of deception. Thus, although you are capable, display incapability....When your objective is nearby, make it appear as if distant; when far away, create the illusion of being nearby." Tech will be relegated to forming an illusion of being nearby and competitive, when the reality is nowhere close. LSU, who we know as extremely capable, will probably spend finding new ways to define incapable, but more by design than flaw. Mistakes are part of the growing process when resting starters and playing untested underclassmen.
Louisiana Tech, while having a decent year under first year coach D. Dooley, cannot even be considered in the same frame of reference when it comes to talent. LSU, even if taking it easy, resting key players and getting the young guys in for snaps early and often, will still look vastly better than the Dawgs. And this is actually a great spot to play Tech in. I'm sure no small amount of mental and physical exertion was put forth last week in Tuscaloosa. A game like this is the next best thing to a bye week.
What to look for? I would like to see Tolliver get some catches. I think he has a bright future. I would like to see none of Dorsey. I would love to see the defensive secondary get a ton of snaps. We will need all the experience they can get when next year rolls around. I would also like to see none of those yellow hankies. But I will settle for a restive, somewhat sloppy effort if can mean a focused and ready LSU ready to take care of business in Oxford and stone Arkansas at home en route to a challenging SECCG. Enjoy yourselves and those purple jerseys folks!