Saturday, November 09, 2013

Anticipating trouble

There are two ways to look at Les Miles's tenure as the head football coach at LSU. One is to resign yourself to the idea that one day we'll all look back on this and laugh. The other is to just start laughing now. It's been about 2 years since I decided on the latter, and I haven't regretted a moment of it.  
Tuesday, reporter Kaylee Hartung got to ride to work with Tigers’ coach Les Miles. The two talked about Miles’ daily routine — like what he eats for breakfast (Raisin Bran and fruit) — and this weekend’s matchup against the Crimson Tide. But the two biggest takeaways from the experience were 1) Les Miles doesn’t wear a seat belt, and 2) Les Miles runs red lights.

However, when Hartung confronts Miles about running the light, he denies it, saying he stopped, then anticipated the change.
The downside to this is college football is pretty unforgiving of sustained imperfection.  One or two years with 2 losses or more in a row and you may have consigned your program to a decade or more of irrelevance.  Which is why it's possible to argue that tonight's game... despite the double digit point spread... is a career defining must-win for Les Miles. 

If LSU pulls off an upset of the currently most hated team in America, they've imbued a 2 loss season with national significance. They will have burnished their reputation for general mayhem and kept pace with A&M as a relevant perennial challenger to Alabama in the SEC.   On the other hand, if they lose this one, then suddenly all the talk is about how it's been 2 years since Les Miles' career peak just moments before his perfect team was smushed by Bama in the Superdome last January. Two years is a long time to go as a second tier team with a recruiting class watching you. 

That may sound harsh but that's how college football works.  And it's why LSU fans can at least console themselves with Miles' goofiness.  If you think they're hard on him as it is, try and imagine any other mediocre coach in this situation without his personality to keep the sharks half at bay.

1 comment:

Nolaresident said...

Well, LSU didn't pull off the win. If LSU doesn't lose the remaining games I think Les is okay. After all, what coach can say they've beat Saban this year?