Most coaches don’t treat their kickers like football players, instead choosing to leave them alone when going through tough times.
Ed Orgeron doesn’t subscribe to that theory. Kicker Cade York has dealt with struggles of late, and Orgeron said he’s going to treat him like he would any other player on the team.
“Some people have a different philosophy about treating kickers. Don’t tell them nothing,” Orgeron said. “That ain’t me. He’s going to be accountable in our program. He’s going to have to answer what’s wrong.”
York missed his only field goal attempts against Utah State and Florida. He made three field goals against Mississippi State on Saturday but missed his second extra point of the season.
The true freshman’s issues are more technical than mental in Orgeron’s estimation, and they’ll be addressed in practice this week.
“It’s all going to be about technique, what is his footwork, was his timing right or wrong, what was it,” the coach said. “He’s going to have to explain, get better at it just like everybody else.
“We see it’s ongoing skill development. I don’t think it’s mental at all. I think it’s definitely about technique.”
One thing Orgeron isn’t considering at this point is making a change at kicker. He said point blank that backup Connor Culp isn’t ready to overtake York for the starting job.
If the misses continue to pile up, Orgeron will simply start going for more fourth downs instead of attempting field goals.
“I’m still going to trust him,” Orgeron said. “He’s our guy. But we’re going to have a plan if he’s not doing well, we may go for it, put the ball in his hands or Joe Burrow’s hands, you know what I mean?”
Burrow is currently completing 79.4 percent of his passes and has thrown for 2,484 yards with a school-record 29 touchdowns against three interceptions in seven games.
THE MARSHALL PLAN
Wide receiver Terrace Marshall has been out since undergoing surgery to repair a foot fracture suffered in the win over Vanderbilt last month.
Marshall has practiced in recent weeks and even dressed out for the Florida and Mississippi State games.
Trainer Jack Marucci and wide receivers coach Joe Brady have a plan to ease Marshall along in practice this week, Orgeron said, and there’s optimism for a potential return against Auburn.
“See how much he can do,” Orgeron said. “Jack Marucci and Coach Brady have an excellent plan. We talked about it today. He’s going to want to do everything, be ready to go. But we feel that by game time he should be ready to play.”
O-LINE HEALTH REPORT
LSU will face an Auburn defensive front this weekend that might be the nation’s best. Orgeron said it’ll be the best defensive line the Tigers have faced thus far.
Fortunately, the LSU offensive line should be whole for the top-10 showdown at Tiger Stadium.
Left tackle Saahdiq Charles will play, Orgeron said, after sitting out the Mississippi State game as a coach’s decision.
Right tackle Austin Deculus should also be good to go after suffering a minor injury against the Bulldogs.
“Might be held out of practice today or tomorrow,” Orgeron said. “He should be fine.”
SEC HONOR FOR STEVENS
Safety JaCoby Stevens was named Co-SEC Defensive Player of the Week, the league office announced Monday. He shared the honor with Texas A&M linebacker Buddy Johnson.
Stevens made eight tackles, including a sack, and pulled in a one-handed interception in LSU’s 36-13 win over Mississippi State on Saturday.
BAMA KICKOFF TIME
The LSU-Alabama game in Tuscaloosa on Nov. 9 will be a 2;30 p.m. CT kickoff on CBS, the SEC league office announced Monday.
This will be the first time LSU-Alabama isn’t a night game since 2010. LSU won that game 24-21 at Tiger Stadium.
Photo by Terrill Weil