LSU notes for September 8, 2011

Freshmen may see the field

Zach Mettenberger has yet to take his first snaps as an LSU quarterback.

Highly touted freshmen like offensive lineman La’El Collins and running back Terrence Magee are waiting to see their first action as well.

Saturday’s game in Tiger Stadium against Northwestern State, an in-state Football Championship Subdivision foe that figures to be little competition for No. 2-ranked LSU, would seem the perfect opportunity to play a liberal number of freshmen and newcomers.

But as far as making a definite preparations to play “X” number of first-year players, LSU coach Les Miles said that will not be part of the game plan against the Demons.

“I don’t think about anything before victory,” Miles said as he met reporters following Wednesday’s practice. “You can’t plan that way.

“That’s not something I would allow.”

That said, Miles did allow that “if the opportunity presents itself, we’re looking forward” to playing some younger players.

“A lot of guys in the program deserve that consideration,” Miles said.

Miles said he does expect Collins, a Redemptorist High School graduate and one of the nation’s top recruits from the Class of 2011, to eventually “play a lot of ball this fall.”

Mathieu earns award

Another day, another honor for LSU defensive back Tyrann Mathieu.

The sophomore Wednesday was named Jim Thorpe Defensive Back of the Week for his play in LSU’s 40-27 win Saturday over Oregon.

Mathieu, who started at nickel back and played all 82 defensive snaps for the Tigers, had a team-high 10 tackles and made a game-changing fumble strip and recovery against Oregon punt returner Kenjon Barner.

Mathieu was also named Southeastern Conference and Louisiana Sports Writers Association defensive player of the week.

OMG … It’s BDP!

Miles turned playful when he was asked whether it would help LSU’s cause that Northwestern State is coached by Bradley Dale Peveto, a Miles assistant from 2005-08.

“Help?” Miles asked, eyebrows raised. “Or hinder? He knows all the inside stuff.”

As expected, Miles then praised Peveto and his team, which rallied from a 17-0 deficit to win its season opener last week over Delta State, 24-23.

“They’ll be prepared and will play with a great desire,” Miles said.

Miles said he and Peveto have maintained a warm relationship since the one-time LSU co-defensive coordinator moved to Natchitoches.

“I texted him this week and he texted me,” Miles said.

Stampley makes his mark

It might have been freshman fullback Kenny Hilliard who got a pair of carries against Oregon, but it was senior fullback James Stampley who made the biggest impression.

Miles said he believed Stampley blocked every Oregon defender Saturday except one of the Ducks’ cornerbacks. Stampley earned an offensive MVP award from Saturday’s game and has been named an offensive team captain for the Northwestern State game.

“We call ourselves assassins,” said tailback Spencer Ware, who benefited from Stampley’s blocking as he piled up 99 yards and a touchdown on 26 carries. “He was one of the assassins that night.”