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September 28, 3:00 PM ET
Chat with Gary Laney

Gary Laney
  (2:25 PM)

Hey folks, if you wander into the chat, it starts at 2. I'll be here then to answer all your questions on LSU football, the Towson game, the upcoming Florida game, LSU's recent bsketball recruiting news, football recruiting news or anything else you can think of (had MLB questions last week). Also, follow me on Twitter at @glaneyespn. You can also follow my partner, David Helman at @helmanespn.

Gary Laney
  (2:59 PM)

I'm ready to get get this thing started. We've got a a few questions in already, so let's get it rolling. Fire away with more.

victor (monroe,la)

gary do you see lsu beating towson this weekend?and do you see lsu number 1 if alabama and usc loses saturday?and geaux tigers.

Gary Laney
  (3:01 PM)

I think you meant if No. 1 Alabama and No. 2 Oregon lose. I don't think that will happen, but if it does, there's a good chance considering Washington's win last night over Stanford, which makes LSU's dominance over the Huskies look a lot better in retrospect.

Cedric (Dallas)

I knew Johnny Jones would come up here and start taking players. He's a good recruiter. You think he can win there?

Gary Laney
  (3:03 PM)

Just to fill in folks who might not know, LSU got a commitment from ESPN 100 forward Jordan Mickey of Arlington, Texas, last night. Probably the best recruit for LSU basketball since Johnny O'Bryant a couple years ago. To answer the question, yes, you can win in LSU. There is apathy, but I also sense a hunger for basketball to be good and a lot of would-be fans sort of waiting for something to be excited about. LSU has had good teams in the last 20 years, but it has struggled to sustain success outside of a one- or two-year stretch. If Jones keeps recruiting players like Mickey, that could change, obviously.

Bobby (Baton Rouge)

Does Mickey help or hurt with recruiting of Jarrell Martin? They seem like similar players.

Gary Laney
  (3:05 PM)

I don't think it hurts at all. They do seem a bit similar, but that's a good thing in their case because they are similar in their versatility. That means they can easily play on the floor together and wouldn't necessarily be redundant.

Donnell (Baton Rouge)

Gary, with Blue going down to you see Ware taking advantage of the situation and becoming a BEAST again or do u see more carries for the freshman Hill. Also, is there anyway this defesne lets the offense keep them from a undefeated date against Bama on Nov 3.

Gary Laney
  (3:08 PM)

I really love Ware's game. But I think his suspension last year might have led to an epiphany of sorts for the coaches. Instead of just riding a horse until its legs are dead, they realized that, by using the whole stable, they can increase the durability of all of them. I doubt it Ware, or any LSU back, becomes a 20-carry-a-game guy. But I do think, on a given night, and if he's on a role, we might see Ware have a game where he carries 20 times and wears an opponent down. If he's running well against a Florida, a South Carolina or an Alabama, I can see Miles sticking with the hot hand.

Gary Laney
  (3:08 PM)

on a "roll"...hate it when chats and tweets make my grammar look bad...

Joe Dirt (Denham Springs)

Do you think LSU's passing game is really as bad as it looked or will it get better?

Gary Laney
  (3:11 PM)

Good question. The longer it struggles, the more inclined I am to say, "It is what it is." But I'm willing to give a pass (no pun intended) for now. I think they are still figuring out who they can best rely on in the passing game in terms of consistently catching passes, running good routes, getting open, etc. For example, every time Kadron Boone is in the game, he produces. Perhaps they are learning that he's a gamer and that will lead to more catches and playing time for him.

John (Baton Rouge) [via mobile]

With Jordan Mickey committed, are there any other high profile guys Johnny Jones is targeting?

Gary Laney
  (3:18 PM)

I mentioned one earlier in Jarrell Martin, the forward from local Madison Academy in Baton Rouge. LSU's also after Keith Frazier, a highly-ranked guard out of the Dallas/Fort Worth Area and three-star forward Brian Bridgewater, another Baton Rouge player at Scotlandville HS.

Gary Laney
  (3:18 PM)

I mentioned one earlier in Jarrell Martin, the forward from local Madison Academy in Baton Rouge. LSU's also after Keith Frazier, a highly-ranked guard out of the Dallas/Fort Worth Area and three-star forward Brian Bridgewater, another Baton Rouge player at Scotlandville HS.

Gary Laney
  (3:18 PM)

I mentioned one earlier in Jarrell Martin, the forward from local Madison Academy in Baton Rouge. LSU's also after Keith Frazier, a highly-ranked guard out of the Dallas/Fort Worth Area and three-star forward Brian Bridgewater, another Baton Rouge player at Scotlandville HS.

RUDY (TEXAS)

WHEN WILL LSU OR ALABAMA EVER ADD ANYTHING EXCITING TO THERE STYLE OF FOOTBALL

Gary Laney
  (3:20 PM)

When they have to. Both have a great formula opponents have a hard time competing against. SEC teams tend to have big athletes who are relatively fast for their size. LSU and Alabama best take advantage of that. The athleticism mixed with size on the lines and the mid-skill positions (like linebacker) are incredible on both teams. That lends itself to a certain style of play. Why mess with it?

Scott G (Los Angeles)

Does the Washington upset of Stanford give LSU a little bit of the lost credibility back for struggling against Auburn?

Gary Laney
  (3:23 PM)

Absolutely. I don't think folks should read too much with either. I think Washington is a decent Pac-12 team (although I still think they'll struggle down the road because their injury-decimated offensive line) that didn't match up well with LSU's strengths. Auburn is a "meh" SEC team that did match up well with LSU, particularly with a pretty good defensive front. But with the computers and the pollsters, the Washington upset of Stanford is huge for LSU.

Scott (Los Angeles)

The Auburn game reminded me of the BCS title game: good defense, but offense never found rhythm and there were no big plays. What happened to the old Les that ran trick plays?

Gary Laney
  (3:25 PM)

This Les feels he has a dominant front on both sides of the ball and a particularly dominant defense. He's much more prone to settling for punting the ball away and sending his defense out than he was in the gambling days when the confidence in the defense wasn't quite as high.If there's a night where they feel like the defense might not be able to get stops when it wants to, then you might see Les roll the dice more.

Scott (Los Angeles)

Are you at a Starbucks in Slidell again?

Gary Laney
  (3:27 PM)

Actually, in a comfortable red chair in my living room with my legs propped up on my favorite ottoman. Next week, however, I'll be "on location" because I've decided to make Gainesville a road trip as opposed to flight. I'm picturing myself beachfront in Destin for our chat, although that's not the most efficient way to get to Gainesville.

Joe Dirt (Denham Springs)

I want to see Jeremy Hill get some carries with Blue hurt.

Gary Laney
  (3:29 PM)

I'd like to see it too Jeremy. With the way LSU runs with a physical style and with how physical the SEC is, I can see Hill start getting more meaningful carries. I think he's a talent, but he's still No. 4 in a 4-back stable (down from 5).

Gary Laney
  (3:30 PM)

Just to fill folks in, Blue appears to be out for a long time, perhaps the season. LSU still has three experienced backs -- Ware, Kenny Hilliard and Michael Ford -- ahead of Hill.

Cecil (Branson, Mo.)

Is LSU any better than Georgia? I'm trying to figure out if my Tigers can compete with your Tigers.

Gary Laney
  (3:33 PM)

I'd love to see Georgia and LSU play. I do think it would be a close game. By your Tigers, I take that to mean Missouri. I do think Missouri needs to upgrade up front to compete with the mainstream of the SEC. It's going to be tough sledding adding new areas to the recruiting base. Texas has been kind to Missouri over the years, but now that it's out of the Big 12, it'll be interesting to see if Missouri can keep the pipeline going or if it will have to rely on more Georgia and Florida players, where I think the competition is a little higher for players, given that it's also in the ACC footprint (meaning Miami, FSU and Georgia Tech).

Jerry (Franklinton, La.)

With the weather forcast caliing for much rain , would you think the passing game may not show us much ?

Gary Laney
  (3:35 PM)

I see a 70 percent rain at kickoff tomorrow with rain before and after kickoff. Doesn't look good at all. The good news is Tiger Stadium's playing surface is outstanding and it hasn't taken much of a beating this season from bad weather. But it does look like the weather is bad enough to affect play calling.

Joe Dirt (Denham Springs)

I heard somebody on your network say Texas' defensive line is the best in the country. You guys must be kidding.

Gary Laney
  (3:38 PM)

Wasn't me! Seriously, I'm not going to say LSU is better than Texas' front because I won't likely see Texas' front play live. But if it's as good, or even close to as good, as LSU's, that's impressive indeed. LSU's front four right now is as dominant as I've ever seen it. The line of scrimmage just collapses toward the QB almost every play.

Jared (NY)

Auburn's DEs troubled Mettenberger last game. Do you think his mobility in the pocket will be an issue looking ahead?

Gary Laney
  (3:41 PM)

Mettenberger has slimmed down a bit since arriving in college. I don't think he's immobile, but maybe not as accustomed to moving around the pocket as some. I think he'll be OK in that regard. What's more concerning is the pass protection. He's gotten way too much pressure this year against suspect competition.

Cecil (Branson, Mo.)

How about A&M. Do you see them competing in the SEC?

Gary Laney
  (3:43 PM)

I think Texas A&M will do well in the SEC because it can sell Texas recruits on playing in the SEC. There isn't a better conference brand out there than the SEC right now and A

Gerald (Lafayette)

Why not Nicholls or UL-Lafayette. Why Towson?

Gary Laney
  (3:45 PM)

We always get that question. LSU does play its in-state schools. Sometimes it's as simple as finding a school that needs a guarantee game on the same date that you want to host one or, it's just about finding a game at all at a late date.

Wayne (Virginia)

Hey Cowherd, Michael Vick has NEVER had good pass protection - at Virginia Tech or with any of the pro teams. He's always running for his life. How can he pass well?

Gary Laney
  (3:47 PM)

I'll let Cowherd know. But consider this: Sometimes a quarterback with good legs will run because he wants to run. He might hold it too long to give the protection a chance to break down, that way he can use his legs to create. I've found that to be the case with Vick.

Gary Laney
  (3:47 PM)

That's the weekly "from left field" question.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

What Schools in Other Conferences Besides The SEC Does LSU face in College Football This Season?

Gary Laney
  (3:48 PM)

Towson, from the Colonial Athletic Association, is the last of four non-conference games for LSU, which has already beaten North Texas (Sun Belt), Washington (Pac-12) and Idaho (WAC). Weak schedule this year, although the U-dub game is looking much better today.

Tony (Richmond, CA)

How many red flags did the Auburn game raise about Zach Mettenberger and his ability to lead the offense on the road or in big SEC games?

Gary Laney
  (3:52 PM)

There are some red flags, indeed, mostly concerning how he sometimes does not seem to "value the ball" enough. He's got four turnovers on a team that emphasizes not turning it over. But I'll defend his passing so far. He threw a couple of really nice deep balls against Auburn that were incomplete. On both, the receiver really needed to step up and make a play for him and come down with the ball. He's putting the ball on the money. The passing game issue isn't just a QB issue. Right now, the receivers need to step their collective game up in a big way.

Gerald (Lafayette)

So, is LSU only five points better than UL-Monroe?

Gary Laney
  (3:54 PM)

Using that logic, they are also 42 points better than Stanford (which lost 17-13 to Washington after LSU beat Washington 41-3) and 49 points better than USC (which lost to Stanford by a touchdown). Seriously, comparative scores are useless. UL-Monroe is playing well. I'd love to see the Warhawks have continued success. But they ain't LSU.

Joe Dirt (Denham Springs)

I thought Loston played well last week. But I'd like to see Ronald Martin get a chance.

Gary Laney
  (3:57 PM)

I'd agree. I thought Loston brought a physical presence to the position and was flying around the football, like coaches are too prone to say. Martin will get his chance. The great thing for him is he's young. He's producing when he plays, so chances will come. Right now, I'm enjoying that Loston played a good game. For him, I hope he can stay healthy and have a sustained stretch of success. The young man looks the part, he just has struggled to stay healthy.

Joe Dirt (Denham Springs)

Rain going to help Towson?

Gary Laney
  (4:00 PM)

If it makes it more of a ground-it-out game, then it plays to Towson's style a bit, but I don't know if that's a good thing. The only team in America who wouldn't mind getting into a physical, run-oriented game with LSU is Alabama. I don't think ANYBODY else wants to go toe-to-toe with LSU's big front and trade blows.

Gary Laney
  (4:01 PM)

That's my time this week folks. Hopefully, I'll be sipping some sweet tea beach front next Friday for the chat. See you then!