Todd Walker breaks down LSU/FSU match-up

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The LSU Tigers are preparing to take on a red-hot Florida State Seminoles in their College World Series opener in Omaha.

Former LSU great Todd Walker joined Bobby Hebert and Deke Bellavia on Sportstalk on Thursday evening.  Walker, an SEC analyst for ESPN and also a former Major Leaguer, certainly is no stranger to the College World Series.  He was the Most Outstanding Player of the 1993 College World Series as he helped lead the Tigers to the championship.

Walker was complimentary of the Noles, specifically praising their starting pitchers and the hitters in the heart of their line-up.  However, he still gives LSU the advantage.

“LSU has the better offense.  I think they've got the better pitching.”

Walker also pointed out that Omaha is a familiar sight for Florida State.

“Florida State has been there, I think this is their 16th time under [Coach] Mike Martin...and they've never won it...That's ridiculous.”

LSU, of course, has been there plenty.  This is the Tigers' 5th trip to Omaha in Paul Manieri's 11th season as head coach, and they won it all back in 2009.  

Getting there is still tough, and advancing is even tougher.  Walker brought up how much the players' emotions can factor into their performance and even their coach's strategy.

“You've got emotional kids.  That's why I think that's why you see a lot of bunts in the 2nd or 3rd inning...because they want the 1-0 lead...you go up 1 run, and these kids kind of get up.”

So what does LSU have to do to?

“Alex Lange has to throw strikes with his fastball...if he misses and hits the plate, he'll get banged around.”

If the Tigers beat the Seminoles, the road doesn't get any smoother.  Barring an upset, LSU's next foe would be the Oregon State Beavers, a squad that has gone an impressive 54-4 with 21 straight wins.


“LSU's won 16 in a row.  Florida State has won 12 or 13.  Oregon State only had four losses. It's who performs the best.  You've got to perform in front of crowds...some guys, it cuts the legs out from under them.  Some rise to the occasion.”

LSU fans are hoping the Tigers will rise to the occasion.

 

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