UAB aims to repeat history at No. 9 LSU - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

UAB aims to repeat history at No. 9 LSU

Posted: Updated:

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — The sight of UAB taking the field in Death Valley will bring back some bad memories for LSU fans.

The conventional wisdom, however, is that the ninth-ranked Tigers won't need long to eliminate any fears of history repeating itself.

According to odds makers, LSU (1-0) is supposed to open its home slate on Saturday night with a nearly five-touchdown margin of victory over the Blazers (0-1).

UAB, by contrast, will aim to make its second trip to Tiger Stadium more like the first. That was back in 2000, in the first month of current Alabama coach Nick Saban's first season at LSU. The Blazers kept it close, won 13-10 on a last-second field goal, then celebrated wildly as the stunned and dejected home crowd filed out.

LSU coach Les Miles was quick to mention that upset when asked about welcoming a seemingly overmatched opponent to Tiger Stadium. It could have been a little dig at Saban, but Miles seemed genuine in his praise for Blazers coach Garrick McGee, who was once the offensive coordinator of Arkansas teams that gave Miles and the Tigers their share of problems in the past.

"He will do some of the same things that he did at Arkansas. Certainly it appears that way on film," Miles said. "The advantage that he has — he has some awareness having played against us before. I'm sure he'll do a great job game planning, and I think that we can look forward to being challenged that way."

For their part, UAB's current players don't seem to buy into the awe factor of Death Valley. Perhaps it's because they know their school's record against mighty LSU is 1-0, giving them reason to believe that anything is possible.

"We treat it like any other game. We played South Carolina and Ohio State last year, so that doesn't really faze me and I don't think it fazes anybody else," Blazers linebacker Jake Ganus said. "We are just going to go out there and play the game of football like we know how."

Here are five things to know heading into UAB's visit to Tiger Stadium:

NON-CONFERENCE DOMINANCE: While UAB draws inspiration from its last triumph in Baton Rouge, more recent history appears decisively on the Tigers' side, thanks to LSU's 32-0 regular season record against non-conference opponents since Miles' arrival in 2005. In fact, LSU has not lost at home to a non-Southeastern Conference team since falling to the Blazers on Sept. 23, 2000.

BLAZING OFFENSE: Although UAB dropped its opener at Troy, 34-31, it showed promise on offense and in its return game. Receiver Jamarcus Nelson had 10 catches for 199 yards, as well as 168 yards on kickoff returns, including a 97-yard touchdown. Quarterback Austin Brown passed for 301 yards and three TDs, and running back Darrin Reaves rushed for 110 yards.

DEVELOPING DEFENSE: LSU entered the season with only three full-time starters returning on defense, but less experienced players who were plugged into more significant roles this season largely passed their first test in LSU's 37-27 victory over TCU in Dallas last weekend. TCU had only one sustained touchdown drive, and that included a roughing-the-passer penalty on a third-down incompletion. The Horned Frogs' other TDs came on a kickoff return and a 6-yard drive after LSU running back Alfred Blue's fumble. In all, TCU gained only 259 yards.

"That defense looked awfully physical to me, very fast to the ball," Miles said. "It will be the same style of defense that we've had for years."

FRESHMAN IMPACTS: LSU played eight true freshmen in its season opener and Miles said even more could play against UAB, including safety Ricky Jefferson, as well as defensive linemen Tayshaun Bower and Lewis Neal. Meanwhile, UAB freshman receiver Jamari Staples has already emerged as one of the Blazers' top threats, with six receptions for 103 yards and a TD last week.

"I know my role, and I know what coach McGee and my other coaches are expecting out of me," Staples said. "I am going to do my best to live up to it."

RUSHING ROTATION: Miles has declined to say whether last year's leading rusher, Jeremy Hill, will return from his disciplinary benching. He also said he was happy with the way three other backs — Blue, Terrence Magee and Kenny Hilliard — played last week and expects rotate all three again.

"It's important that you're fresh. It's important that guys can get yards after contact," Miles said. "We're not making any determination of who starts and who doesn't at this point."

  • Central Alabama NewsMore>>

  • 1 cent sales tax increase for Hoover City Schools?

    1 cent sales tax increase for Hoover City Schools?

    Sunday, August 31 2014 9:58 PM EDT2014-09-01 01:58:15 GMT
    In recent months, possible re-zoning and a proposed cost-sharing model for school buses have been controversial issues tied to funding for Hoover City Schools. But longtime Hoover resident and retiredMore >>
    In recent months, possible re-zoning and a proposed cost-sharing model for school buses have been controversial issues tied to funding for Hoover City Schools. But longtime Hoover resident and retiredMore >>
  • Fire danger rises for Labor Day weekend

    Fire danger rises for Labor Day weekend

    Friday, August 29 2014 11:59 PM EDT2014-08-30 03:59:40 GMT
    Our recent dry weather has created the perfect conditions for fire danger. More >>
    Our recent dry weather has created the perfect conditions for fire danger. More >>
  • Talladega parents allege school employee wrote racist Facebook posts

    Talladega parents allege school employee wrote racist Facebook posts

    Friday, August 29 2014 7:32 PM EDT2014-08-29 23:32:28 GMT
    Several parents and community members in Talladega are upset Friday over allegations of racial comments made from a school employee's Facebook page.More >>
    Several parents and community members in Talladega are upset Friday over allegations of racial comments made from a school employee's Facebook page.More >>
  • Birmingham Area NewsMore>>

  • UPDATE: Crews restore water service in Birmingham's Norwood area

    UPDATE: Crews restore water service in Birmingham's Norwood area

    Monday, September 1 2014 2:04 AM EDT2014-09-01 06:04:24 GMT
    Crews with the Birmingham waters board are still trying to fix a water main break that erupted yesterday in the Norwood area. According to spokeswoman Binnie Myles the break involves a 20 inch main sandwiched in between two gas lines.More >>
    Crews with the Birmingham waters board are still trying to fix a water main break that erupted yesterday in the Norwood area. According to spokeswoman Binnie Myles the break involves a 20 inch main sandwiched in between two gas lines.More >>
  • Car crashes into Birmingham house

    Car crashes into Birmingham house

    Sunday, August 31 2014 10:18 PM EDT2014-09-01 02:18:57 GMT
    Neighbors living on 16th Way Southwest in Birmingham say they're dealing with a serious problem.Numerous accidents are happening around a dangerous curve.Sunday a car slammed into a house.Neighbors say no one was hurt. But there are many concerns."I was wondering was I going to run or duck, was it going to hit our home." But a dodge charger hit the house across the street from Marcus Yarbrough's house. "I heard the car coming, screeching around the corner." "Instead of having a head on collis...More >>
    Neighbors living on 16th Way Southwest in Birmingham say they're dealing with a serious problem.Numerous accidents are happening around a dangerous curve.Sunday a car slammed into a house.Neighbors say no one was hurt. But there are many concerns."I was wondering was I going to run or duck, was it going to hit our home." But a dodge charger hit the house across the street from Marcus Yarbrough's house. "I heard the car coming, screeching around the corner." "Instead of having a head on collis...More >>
  • No more parking under I-20/59 bridges starting Tuesday

    No more parking under I-20/59 bridges starting Tuesday

    Sunday, August 31 2014 9:29 PM EDT2014-09-01 01:29:44 GMT
    Starting this Tuesday, parking spots under the Interstate 20/59 bridges near the BJCC in downtown Birmingham will be eliminated. Crews have put up at least one large sign, warning drivers of the change. SomeMore >>
    Starting this Tuesday, parking spots under the Interstate 20/59 bridges near the BJCC in downtown Birmingham will be eliminated. Crews have put up at least one large sign, warning drivers of the change. SomeMore >>
Most Popular
Stories
Videos
loading...