If there was any dark lining to the great, shimmering silver cloud of LSU's victory over Alabama last Saturday, it was the play of quarterback Jarrett Lee. After eight mostly perfect games as the Tigers' unquestioned starter, Lee hit just 3 of his 7 passes against the Tide for only 24 yards and no touchdowns. Even worse, Lee tossd a pair of ugly interceptions that brought to mind his disastrously pick-prone 2008 season.
The result during the game was that Jordan Jefferson played the majority of the second half and the Tigers' lone overtime series. But the fallout for Lee could last even longer, as Les Miles has been steadfast in his refusal to name Lee (or Jefferson) the Tigers' starter for their sparring match Saturday against Western Kentucky.
"I haven't given it a lot of thought, to be honest with you," Miles said Wednesday, telling reporters that a starter wouldn't be named until kickoff. "It's my same two guys. I'm looking forward to them playing."
Asked Tuesday whether Miles would want to name Lee the starter or take other measures vs. the overmatched Hilltoppers to restore Lee's confidence, the coach said that 1. he would not 2.Lee didn't need the coddling anyway:
"We're not soothing or trying to comfort a young ego. I think that's the motivation that Jarrett responds to. He understands football. This is a quality young man. He's more veteran ...In the hands of a less confident coach, with less experienced quarterbacks, this kind of juggling under center might drag down an entire team. But Miles, of course, has juggled QBs for years and showed against the Tide that he's as crafty at it as ever; Lee and Jefferson are, of course, both highly experienced seniors who have had their ups-and-downs and won't be fazed by a little bench time or open competition; and the team, of course, doesn't care who the quarterback is as long as they're winning. That both players will see plenty of snaps regardless of who the "No. 1" QB is makes the "controversy" even less significant.
I don't really care about getting back on the horse, or the philosophy 'let's make the QB comfortable.' Hell, we need to execute the offense. We need to play."
So as it weird as it seems to type that the unanimous No. 1 team in the country has no starting quarterback but that it doesn't really matter, we're forced to conclude it's true: the unanimous No. 1 team in the country has no starting quarterback, but it doesn't really matter.