Jefferson's arrest & suspension not "doomsday" for LSU football
by Deke Bellavia,posted Sep 1 2011 1:00PM
WWL's Deke Bellavia says that while the arrest of starting quarterback Jordan Jefferson is an emotional blow for the Tigers and their fans, it doesn't mean the LSU football team has lost its chance at a BCS championship run this year.
"Purely from a football standpoint, this is not doomsday," Deke says. "This is a team that had a terrible, terrible passing game the last two seasons, yet they went 11-2 last year and went to a New Year's bowl."
Jarrett Lee will now likely be the starting quarterback. Lee has been taking about half the snaps at practice recently as the team considered options in the whole saga.
"From a passing standpoint, you now have a guy starting behind center with better passing credentials. If this young man leads this LSU to a championship season, it's going to be one of the biggest feel-good sports stories of the year."
Deke notes that Lee has stuck with the Tigers as a backup QB, even though he could have left for greener pastures some time ago.
"Nobody has taken more criticism than Jarrett Lee. He could have left and started in another Division 1 program. Now, he's got his chance again at LSU, because someone made a mistake off the field."
WWL.com columnist Jeff Palermo also says the loss of Jefferson doesn't mean the loss of a run at the BCS.
"This team has faced some very interesting challenges during Les Miles' tenure," according to Jeff. "From Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, to time-management issues, to back-to-back losses...they have always rebounded."
Jeff says past LSU squads under Miles have actually done better when faced with adversity.
"His teams have always have had their best performances when their backs are against the wall. At least it happened today, and not next week as they were on the way to Dallas to face Oregon."