1:49 PM EDT, Mon August 31, 2015
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And The Valley Shook 2 hours ago

Link Gumbo -- 8/31/15

Your first gameweek Gumbo of the year. We'll have the latest from Lunch w/Les later today, but for now, here's the latest news and notes because it's GAMEWEEK Y'ALL. Baseball - Schedule - LSUsports.net - The Official Web Site of LSU Tigers Athletics - The schedule for the 2016 baseball season is out. LSU opens up with a three game set against Cincinnati at Alex Box. The first SEC series is at home against Alabama. ULL is the opponent in the Wally Pontiff Classic on Tuesday, Mar 22. There's a two game midweek set against Notre Dame in May, where Paul Mainieri was employed as head coach...
And The Valley Shook 6 hours ago

Delusional Optimism Is Taking Names

Payback starts now. Five years ago, LSU was coming off of two straight relatively disappointing seasons. The common refrain was that LSU was 8-8 in SEC play over the past two years, Miles was an incompetent boob, and the Decline is real. One internet smart ass looked at the team's well-stocked roster due to recruiting success and a string of hard luck resulting in a deflated record, and he wrote a confident prediction of at least ten wins. He then gave it a tongue in cheek name: Delusional Optimism. You know the rest. Now, here we are again. The boo birds are back, a veritable murder of...
And The Valley Shook Aug 28, 2015

LSU Offensive Coordinator Cam Cameron Had Cancer Surgery; Will Coach 2015 Season

LSU called a short press conference to clear the air regarding offensive coordinator Cam Cameron's health. When you get word of LSU calling a quickie press conference eight days from the season opener, it's admittedly something that makes you kind of nervous. Nevermind when it involves the word cancer. Still, all things considered, it was a relatively benign (pun not intended) announcement: LSU's Cam Cameron has had surgery to treat a prostate cancer diagnosis, but per the man himself is cancer free and ready to roll for the coming season. "I'm fine, my health is good," Cameron told...
And The Valley Shook Aug 28, 2015

Link Gumbo -- 8/28/2015

News and notes to end the final week of the offseason. I want to say thanks again for all of the shares and kind words for Wednesday's Katrina/Arizona State 10th anniversary story. Getting that right has been important to me, more so in recent weeks, and I hope that I did. Anyway, I know some are sick of Katrinaversary stuff, and in some ways I don't blame you, but there's been some really good stuff out there this week. If you haven't read Wright Thompson's Beyond the Breach, I can't recommend it enough. It's a long read, but it's Thompson at his best, covering difficult topics from a...
And The Valley Shook Aug 27, 2015

2015 LSU Football Position Previews

Priming you for the 2015 football season with a look at every position on the Tigers. Name Height/Weight 2014 Season 10 Anthony Jennings (Jr.) 6-2, 216 Completed 111-of-227 passes (48.9%) for 1,611 yards (7.1 YPA) with 11 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. Rushed for 292 yards on 108 carries. 6 Brandon Harris (Soph.) 6-3, 206 Completed 25-of-45 passes (55.6%) for 452 yards (10 YPA) with 6 touchdowns and 2 interceptions. Rushed for 159 yards on 26 carries with 3 touchdowns. 12 Justin McMillian (Fr.) 6-2, 193 Three-star recruit. 1 Danny Etling...
And The Valley Shook Aug 27, 2015

2015 LSU Football Optimistic/Pessimistic/Realistic: Quarterbacks

Same as it ever was, right? Name Height/Weight 2014 Season 10 Anthony Jennings (Jr.) 6-2, 216 Completed 111-of-227 passes (48.9%) for 1,611 yards (7.1 YPA) with 11 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. Rushed for 292 yards on 108 carries. 6 Brandon Harris (Soph.) 6-3, 206 Completed 25-of-45 passes (55.6%) for 452 yards (10 YPA) with 6 touchdowns and 2 interceptions. Rushed for 159 yards on 26 carries with 3 touchdowns. 12 Justin McMillian (Fr.) 6-2, 193 Three-star recruit. 1 Danny Etling (Jr.) 6-3, 226 Completed 89-of-162 passes for 800 yards with 6...
And The Valley Shook Aug 27, 2015

The Dominance of the West's Top Three

There's a crack in the foundation, but is the old order crumbling down? Last year was a truly remarkable year in the SEC West, as the bottom half of the division broke through and staked their claim to the division. When Ole Miss and Mississippi St. finished it in the top 3, it marked the first time two of the Alabama, LSU, Auburn troika finished outside the top three in the division since 1999. Yes, that was last century. Since then, every year, at least two of the three of Alabama, Auburn, LSU have finished in the top three in the division standings. Six times in the past fifteen years,...
And The Valley Shook Aug 26, 2015

2015 LSU Volleyball Preview

The LSU volleyball team looks to make a third consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament Football is not the only sport entering the fall with high expectations. The LSU volleyball team is looking to make a third straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament. 2014 Recap The season did not kick off spectacularly as the Tigers would have liked falling to two games under .500 just one month into the season, capped off by three straight losses to begin SEC play. The season got back on track quite quickly as the Tigers would record ten straight wins, including over then #12 ranked Kentucky. LSU...
And The Valley Shook Aug 26, 2015

Hurricane Katrina & Les Miles at 10: Still Weathering the Storm

Ten years later, things that made little sense now just seem normal. On Friday, August 26, 2005, Hurricane Katrina, then predicted to make landfall on the Florida Panhandle, shifted track in the Gulf of Mexico and headed toward the Louisiana/Mississippi Gulf Coast. As city and state preparations began, I was at work, covering a pair of high school jamborees featuring Bogalusa and Franklinton high schools in Covington, La., for the Bogalusa (La.) Daily News. The Saints played their third preseason game earlier that night, and on the drive back to my apartment, the WWL 870 postgame show...
And The Valley Shook Aug 25, 2015

The 2015 ATVS - Geaux Show Pick'em Challenge

Back once again, it's the 9th/10th annual ATVS-Geaux Show Pick'em Challenge! Where you can put your skills of prediction up against the world to win fabulous prizes. If you played last year, you have already likely received an invitation email to this year's pool. For new readers, the signup is simple. CLICK THIS LINK to be taken to our pool provider FunOfficePools.com. Sign up for an account, then join our pool. This year's password is tigers. Picks will again be against the spread. Also, picks are due up until the kickoff of each individual game. Forget about making your picks until...
And The Valley Shook Aug 25, 2015

A Special ATVS Interview: Jacob Hester

Never a bad time to talk to one of the legends of the Les Miles Era. His NFL career ended in 2013, but Jacob Hester is never far from the thoughts of LSU fans. So when local cable outlet Cox Sports Television announced its LSU Gameday Live pregame show to start last fall, Hester was a natural choice to join Gordy Rush, Victor Howell, Emily Dixon and fellow former Tiger great Kevin Mawae on the show. With a new season set to start, Hester was able to sit down and answer a couple of questions about his transition to the sports media, the 2015 Tigers and some memories. You're entering season...
And The Valley Shook Aug 24, 2015

LSU Basketball Australia Trip Recap and Takeaways

LSU goes 3-2 (with four strong performances) against four veteran NBL teams. Simmons, Blakeney shine. The LSU Men's Basketball team kicked off their 2015-2016 season last week with a 5 game exhibition trip around beautiful Australia. The trip was a great success on all accounts, earning a 3-2 overall record with four strong showings in games 1-4. Game 5 was a blowout loss, but thats not surprising, or discouraging, given that the team was playing against seasoned veterans and grown men. The team showed a willingness to play together, a necessity to compete with NBL teams that play a slow,...
And The Valley Shook Aug 24, 2015

Link Gumbo -- 8/24/2015

News and notes for your Monday. Classes start today for LSU students, so if you're reading this freshmen, get to class on time -- you never get a second chance to make a first impression, and professors will forgive a lot for good attendance & engagement. And don't ask upperclassmen where Taylor Hall is. LSU's new lettermen have their jackets as well. As for the Tiger football team, they seem to have lost their first transfer of the fall, as freshman tight end Hanner Shipley seems to have already returned to Texas. News broke last night that Shipley is transferring to Abilene Christian....
And The Valley Shook Aug 23, 2015

2015 LSU Football Optimistic/Pessimistic/Realistic: Defensive Line

There are some question marks here, but a great foundation is in place. There are some question marks about LSU's defense entering 2015, and all of them are worth asking. But one thing that is not deniable is that the base of this defense up the middle is very strong. From defensive tackle, to middle linebacker to safety, LSU has talent and experience at each level, and that's as good of a place for a defense to start as any. The questions will come more on the outside. Defensive Tackle Name Height/Weight 2014 Season 91 Christian LaCouture (Jr.) 6-5, 307 40 tackles, 4 TFL...
And The Valley Shook Aug 21, 2015

And the Valley Drinks: Offseason Out-Takes

Last weeks of the offseason, can’t hold anything back -- let’s review some of our final beers of the season. We're about to hit the two-week mark until the season begins, and with offseason winding down here are some outtakes from our Drinks series. A roundup of some of the beers I tried over the offseason that didn't wind up making their own post. Abita Wrought Iron IPA Abita broke out this new IPA in the spring and honestly it's...not great. Kind of an example of what most people talk about when they talk about why they don't like IPAs. They really hit you over the head with the...
And The Valley Shook Aug 20, 2015

SEC Positional Rankings: Special Teams

STU doesn't exactly roll off the tongue. Special teams consists of four unequal parts: field goals, punting, returns, and coverage. I'm a huge proponent of the hidden yards of football, and I place a lot of weight in return and coverage units. Punting is important, but it is not the gross punting yard that matters, but the net. I want to see what your averages look like after the returns are factored. POSEUR As is my wont, I created another stat to evaluate the units: I looked at the net punt differential. That is a team's net punting average minus their opponent's net average, which...
And The Valley Shook Aug 19, 2015

2015 LSU Football Optimistic/Pessimistic/Realistic: Special Teams

A step back last year, albeit a small one. What’s in store for LSU’s kicking game in 2015? 38 Jamie Keehn (Sr.), P 6-5, 231 Averaged 44.9 yards on 71 punts, with a net of 41.3, 27 punts downed inside the 20 and three touchbacks. 42 Colby Delahoussaye (Jr.), K 5-9, 182 Made 11-15 field goals and 34-16 extra points. Long field goal of 50 yards. 14 Trent Domingue (Jr.) P/K 6-2, 170 Made 2-4 field goals and 6-6 extra points. Long field goal of 31 yards. Averaged 62.2 yards on 51 kickoffs with 28 touchbacks. 50 Reid Ferguson (Sr.) SNP 6-2,...
And The Valley Shook Aug 19, 2015

Link Gumbo -- 8/19/2015

Catching up on news and notes. LSU will hold it's final two-a-day practices today and officially break camp tomorrow, with a scrimmage set for Saturday. Les Miles had the team break up the monotony a little on Tuesday night with an appearance from Kool DJ Supamike: LSU Football Team Turnt @ #ClubOps These Boyz Ready For This Season!!!!#Gueaxtigers #TheBigTicket #ItsKool A video posted by @kooldjsupamike on Aug 18, 2015 at 9:11pm PDT Some more reports from The Advocate beat: LSU's 'grandpa' can flex again Arden Key: when Ed Orgeron was hired, I knew I was going to be a...
And The Valley Shook Aug 18, 2015

Better Know a Freshman: Xavier Lewis

Louisiana DB will make a mark at LSU. It's reached the point, maybe a while ago, where the surest path to the NFL playing defensive back goes through Baton Rouge. I don't need to list all the names again. The moniker DBU didn't come by accident. Safeties, corners, nickels, starters, backups, role players... they almost all seem to find their way into the NFL. It's a remarkable, unbelievable run that can't be rivaled by many in college football history... at any position. Year after year after year LSU lands high profile defensive after high profile defensive back. Year after year after year...
And The Valley Shook Aug 18, 2015

The NLRB Says No to Student-Athlete Unions... For Now

This is what judicial restraint looks like, folks In a somewhat surprising move yesterday, the NLRB dismissed the petition of the Northwestern student-athletes asking for certification of the union. It only took a year and half for the NLRB to issue its ruling, dismissing the case entirely on jurisdictional grounds, and refusing to hear the case on its merits. Before we get into the ruling itself, let's cover what this means for LSU: absolutely nothing. I am of the same opinion I was when the regional board ruled in the players' favor, absent a massive and unforeseen political shift, there...

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