For the first time since getting injured in an Oct. 10 loss at Missouri, LSU quarterback Myles Brennan returned to practice field during the Tigers’ open date on Wednesday.
And it did not go well with Brennan testing hius healing torn abdomen muscle for the first time.
LSU head football coach Ed Orgeron said on his Wednesday night weekly radio show that Brennan likely won’t play Nov. 14 when the Tigers (2-3) host No. 2 Alabama (6-0) on Nov. 14 at 5 p.m.
“He tried to practice today, he practiced a little bit and it wasn’t very good,” Orgeron said. “It was hurting. So, we’re going to see again tomorrow (Thursday). And we’ll see how much he can practice next week. Right now, I’d have to say he’s very doubtful the way it is.”
Brennan started in LSU’s first three games, compiling a program’s best 1,112 passing yards and 11 touchdowns during that span that included a torn abdomen suffered on a first-quarter scramble at Missouri. He went on to complete the game – a 45-41 loss – by passing for a career-high 430 yards and four touchdowns.
In his absence, true freshman T.J. Finley has started the past two games with mixed results in a 52-24 win over South Carolina and 48-11 defeat at Auburn. Finley has completed 30 of 45 passes for 408 yards with three interceptions and two touchdowns, while true freshman Max Johnson made his debut last week off the bench and passed for 172 yards (15 of 24) for a touchdown and no interceptions.
“We’re going to have a competition between Max and TJ just like we had (last week) and let’s see who does the best job,” Orgeron said. “And whoever does the best job, we’re going to start him. We’re splitting every (practice) rep between Max and TJ.”
Orgeron said the team will practice Thursday before taking off three days and returning to begin preparations for Alabama.
Here’s what else Orgeron had to say earlier Wednesday on the weekly SEC Coaches teleconference:
On how you and the team are dealing with the disappointing start to the season
“It’s very challenging, but we’ve got to fix us. Lots of mistakes. We’ve got to coach better, No. 1. There’s a lot of new players that have to learn that the SEC you’ve got to come ready to play every game. I know that we’re building another championship football team, but you’ve got to go through adversity. You’ve got go to go through some hard knocks to build that character, that grit you’re going to need down the road several seasons from now where these young players are going to learn how to win.”
On former Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville getting elected to the Alabama Senate
“We were roommates at Miami. We were grad assistants together. We’re very close. I’m so happy for him. I think that he’s going to do a good job. Tommy was a great coach and in fact was the one that got me from Arkansas to the University of Miami. We always knew he would be a politician. He just has that in him, and I think he’s going to do a fantastic job.”
On the manner of teaching a young team to become a championship team
“We did it before. After we lost to Troy, we gutted it out. We went and beat Florida. We’ve got to gut it out. We have to look at ourselves and I’ve got to do a great job of leading, molding and keeping these guys together and teach them how to win. Teach them the mistakes we make in practice; teach them the mistakes we make in the games and just continue to get better. And stay together as a football team.”
On the difficulty of keeping young players happy when they’re not playing and want to play
“It’s something I’m constantly talking to our players about. I tell them they earn the right to play on the practice field. There’s a lot of freshmen that have played for us and some of them very well. Look at Arik Gilbert and B.J. Ojulari. We’ve some guys that playing very well. We’ve got some young guys that have to learn how to play, but you’ve got to earn your right to play.”
On watching the success of your former players in the NFL
“They’re playing lights out. Fantastic. We show them every Tuesday. It’s a little clip about the guys that are doing well. Patrick Queen, Joe Burrow, Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Lloyd Cushenberry, Damien Lewis, K’Lavon Chaisson, all of those guys are doing a great job. Plus, all of the former players. It’s fun to see. It’s motivational for our football team. It shows the development. A lot of those guys were three-star players coming out of high school and developed at LSU and got better playing in the SEC. We’re proud of them.”
On the performance of Tampa Bay’s Devin White
“He’s having an All-Pro year. He’s showing his tremendous skills and toughness. He’s one of the fastest linebackers I’ve ever been around along with (former Ole Miss standout) Patrick Willis. We’re just proud of him.”