From the Other Sideline – LSU

Glenn Gilbeau (Twitter) is the LSU beat reporter for the Shreveport Times. He loves Cam Newton, and still doesn’t understand Auburn’s mascot situation, even after covering the good Tigers for a few years. He also talks Iron Bowl (huh?), and likes the Tigers chances.

1. What’s the first thing LSU fans think of when they think of Auburn in 2010?

Cam Newton and the fact that Auburn has never been able to name itself. Tigers, Plainsman, War Eagles, which is it? They call themselves the Tigers, and – I know – War Eagle is a battle cry, but then the baseball stadium is called Plainsman Park? Auburn seems to have a problem with nicknames.

“Iron Bowl” is probably the greatest name for a game, but Auburn fans get all upset about that because the name originated from being played in Birmingham. The origin doesn’t matter. What matters is if the name sticks, and that one does. The game IS the “Iron Bowl” regardless of where it is played, period. And how good can a school or town be if toilet paper is so prominent? And remember, Forrest Gump went to Alabama. He didn’t go to Auburn. Also remember, I covered Auburn in 1995 and 1996 for the Mobile paper. So I know these things.

2. What are the Bengal Tigers’ major concerns for this weekend?

Cam Newton, Auburn’s rush defense and what to call Auburn. And no one calls LSU the “Bengal” Tigers. (WB: had to differentiate somehow)

3. Who are two unknown players that Auburn should look out for and why?

Tyrann Mathieu is a true freshman defensive back who has been terrorizing opponents as a blitzer and ball hawk. Defensive end Barkevious Mingo is another speedster on the edge who generally comes in for passing situations. He has safety speed.

4. Who is your favorite Auburn Tiger and why?

I really like Cam Newton. I think he’s gotten a lot of undue criticism for the computer incident at Florida. He’s very well spoken – a natural. He’s blessed with a lot of natural ability, but he is obviously very smart as he makes so many decisions on the fly. He is Dameyune Craig with more size.

5. Where do you expect these two teams to struggle/excel against each other?

I think LSU will be the best defense Auburn has faced. Mississippi State made Newton look human, so LSU should as well, but that State game was early in the season. I think LSU should have a good day passing the ball. LSU may have its worst day running the ball of the season. LSU’s quarterbacks may fold under the pressure and noise at Jordan-Hare and throw some key interceptions. Jordan-Hare remains the loudest place I’ve been for a game. It was the Iron Bowl in 1993.

6. What do you think is the best and worst case scenarios for LSU this Saturday?

If LSU stops Cam Newton, then the Auburn offense may be limited. LSU’s quarterbacks may make Auburn’s pass defense look a lot better than it is.

7. Where do you see LSU ending up this season?

10-2, Cotton Bowl.

8. Where do you see Auburn ending up this season?

11-1, Sugar Bowl.

9. What is your prediction/analysis for the game?

Auburn 24, LSU 21.

10. LSU fans hated Les Miles after the Tennessee game, but loved him after the Florida win. How do they feel now? Will they call for his hat after losing to Auburn?

They don’t exactly love him yet. Even after the Florida win, he has been getting a lot of criticism. If LSU plays well and loses at Auburn with no major clock malfunctions from the sideline, I don’t think fans will want his hat at 7-1. LSU could still win 9 or 10 games. Some want him fired just because they want to be right, but it’s not going to happen this year.

11. Are LSU fans aware that there is absolutely no way that their Tigers will leave the Plains with a victory?

Fate and a man named Cam won’t let it happen. Yes they are. That’s why there will be no LSU fans at the game. NOT.