When one thinks of LSU football, the first thing that might come to mind is a grass-eating coach that often gets lucky on questionable calls. However, Les Miles is only part of the equation that will put LSU in the BCS National Championship.
The most essential part of the equation, according to most sports outlets, is whether Jordan Jefferson performs to his full potential. I am here to tell you that Jefferson's performance is the smallest part of the equation.
The play of Russell Sheppard and two relatively unknown running backs, sophomores Michael Ford and Spencer Ware, will lead LSU in a national championship run. Also, you should recall that each time LSU has won a national championship, the game was played in the city of New Orleans. Would you care to guess where it is located this year?
Sheppard has always been known as a stellar athlete. However, he has experienced some trouble in his transition from quarterback to slot receiver/running back. Don't let my words fool you though. He has improved his statistics each year, and last year was statistically his best season to date. He is primed for a standout year that will no doubt catapult him onto the national stage.
The next important factor will be the play at running back. LSU saw no drop in performance in the running game after dark horse Heisman candidate Charles Scott injured himself and forced Stevan Ridley into the role. Now that Ridley has left for the NFL, one of the six running backs on the roster will either have to carry the load or share it with someone else.
I predict that last year's two standout freshman running backs, Ware and Ford, will easily transition into this role and make running the offense easier now that Steve Kragthorpe has stepped down from the offensive coordinator role.
I am not telling you that Jefferson won't need to have a good season. I'm stating that the roster has some decent depth at QB with Zach Mettenberger and Jarrett Lee, and because Jefferson is surrounded with excellent offensive talent, LSU will win Nov. 5 in Tuscaloosa, beat whatever weak competition awaits from the SEC East in the title game, and represent the SEC in the BCS National Championship Game.