LSU preps to welcome South Carolina's defense to Death Valley - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

LSU preps for SC's defense

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) -

The No. 9 LSU is bracing for Saturday night's game with No. 3 South Carolina and one of the main concerns is whether the Tigers' offensive line is able to overcome the Gamecocks' defense in Death Valley.

"I don't know that we're not necessarily trying to make a statement," said LSU quarterback Zach Mettenberger. "We're just looking to win a football game."

We all know the saying if you do what you've always done, you'll get what you've always gotten. With that in mind, many LSU fans feel the offense needs a shakeup.

"We are a predictable bunch," said LSU head coach Les Miles. "We're going to run it. We're going to pass it. When we're in certain sets, then we are predictable. That predictability doesn't allow them to defend us any differently."

"It shouldn't matter if it's predictable or not. If we execute the game plan and the play, it should work, no doubt," added Mettenberger.

Some people wonder if more shotgun could get Mettenberger going. However, the coach and the quarterback don't seem crazy about that either.

"Certainly, the run-pass relationship gives us an advantage when he's under center," said Miles.

"I like going under center a little more because in the shotgun, you've got to take your eyes off the defense to catch the ball. When your hands are under center, he knows where you're going to be and you know where the ball is going to be, so you can keep your eyes on the defense the whole time," explained Mettenberger.

South Carolina rolls into Baton Rouge for a game that, quite frankly, doesn't look good for LSU on paper. The Gamecocks are No. 2 in the SEC in points allowed and No. 1 in sacking the quarterback.

"That's where you have to have trust and confidence in your offensive line to be able to protect me. I know those guys are probably going to make a play and get to me, but if they can just hold them off for as long as possible, then I can get through my reads and we should be fine," the junior quarterback stated.

"We've got to work hard against them this week," said LSU defensive lineman Anthony Johnson. "We've got to give them more pressure. The defensive ends are going to work harder on the edges and up the middle. We've just got to keep continuing to get push, so we can pressure Mettenberger a little bit and get him ready for that speed."

Super sophomore Jadeveon Clowney for the Gamecocks has lived up to his billing out of high school and then some. He is second in the SEC in sacks and tackles for loss.

"I came out with Jadeveon Clowney in high school. He was the No. 1 player and I was the No. 2 player. We talk a lot. And, we talked the Thursday before they played. They call me John Coffee. He said, 'John Coffee, I'm going to have three sacks this game.' I said, 'Go out and do your thing, man. Let me see what you've got.' He went out there and balled," Johnson added.

Copyright 2012 WAFB. All rights reserved.

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