Brian Kelly Provides Final Updates Ahead of Mississippi State Matchup – Sports Illustrated

  • September 16, 2022

Brian Kelly provided his final press conference ahead of the Tigers’ matchup against the Mississippi State Bulldogs this Saturday in Tiger Stadium. The LSU decision-maker hit on a few key subjects as we inch closer to his SEC debut.
There remains uncertainty surrounding a number of position groups, but the depth of this squad shouldn’t raise much concern as they return a couple of guys who were sidelined a week ago.
Here are a few takeaways from what Kelly had to say Thursday:
Injury Update/Secondary Depth Returning
The Tigers will return Ohio State transfer Sevyn Banks Saturday night, providing this secondary with another experienced cornerback to lock down this ‘air raid’ offense. Banks has been out for most of the offseason nursing an injury he suffered towards the end of last season while with the Buckeyes.
READ MORE: LSU Set to Host Trio of IMG Academy Prospects This Weekend 
Kelly expects him to see the field, but his snaps will be limited as LSU works him back to full strength.
“He’s going to play. I think he’s in a place where he feels he can do the things necessary to help our football team win,” Kelly said. “I know our trainers feel that way as well. He hasn’t played in awhile, so what type of rotation that is is yet to be determined, but he is ready to play and will play.”
Another injury the Tigers have been monitoring this week is cornerback Colby Richardson who has been battling a mild thigh contusion. Kelly expects him to be good to go Saturday night which will help the depth of this secondary significantly.
Finally, LSU will get to put freshman defensive end Quency Wiggins on the field. Wiggins has been battling a foot injury that had him sidelined and in a boot for the Florida State game, but is back to 100%. Expect him to play some special teams.
Knocking the rust off of John Emery
Emery was suspended for the first two games of the season due to academic issues, even after missing all of 2021. All in all, the senior back has been suspended 15 straight games and hasn’t touched the field since 2020.
With that being said, the Tigers will work him in slowly to get his feet back underneath him. LSU has seen some success with sophomore running back Armoni Goodwin and Penn State transfer Noah Cain, but the addition of Emery will be critical long term.
READ MORE: Freshman TE Mason Taylor Creating his Own Legacy
Kelly detailed what to expect from a volume perspective and how the Tigers will gradually progress his snaps.
“We want to get him in the action, but we feel like with the other backs deserve playing time as well,” Kelly said. “John’s not going to be featured like Kayshon [Boutte] was featured. We’re excited to get him back. He brings a skill set that we’re impressed with but we can’t put too much on him.”
Offensive line rotation, progression
Kelly spoke highly of his new starting offensive line and expects it to look the same going forward. This coaching staff decided to switch things up against Southern, putting Charles Turner in at center while flipping Garrett Dellinger to left guard.
LT: Will Campbell
LG: Garrett Dellinger
C: Charles Turner
RG: Anthony Bradford
RT: Miles Frazier
READ MORE: Landing These Three 2023 Recruits Would Dramatically Improve LSU's Class 
“There’s been better communication up front,” Kelly said. “We had a very inexperienced center that we were trying to force into a very short window into that position with Garrett. He gave us everything he could, but we needed to make a change to gain a little more experience. [Charles] Turner has done a really nice job there.” 
Zack Nagy

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