Like the one before it, the 2018 LSU Spring Game will bring some fun innovation for fans to the process of what is really an exhibition.
A year ago, LSU held its first nighttime spring game since 1998. This year, the program has a block party planned for fans starting at 1 p.m. ET, well before the team walks down "Victory Hill" and gets ready for the game. After, fans will be invited onto the field for an autograph session with members of the team.
It sounds like a celebration for fans, and it is—some of the biggest programs in the nation such as Alabama and Ohio State have their spring games on the same day, so it's annually becoming an arms race to attract the most fans and host the best experience.
Here's everything to know about the game itself, where offensive questions reign supreme.
2018 LSU Spring Game
When: Saturday, April 21, at 5 p.m. ET
Where: Tiger Stadium
TV: SEC Network
Live Stream: WatchESPN
Coming off a nine-win season and sour ending in the Citrus Bowl loss to Notre Dame in which they could only score 17 points, the offense once again falls under scrutiny this spring.
Myles Brennan seems to have a head start under center after backing up Danny Etling a year ago, though he posted all of one touchdown and two interceptions over 24 attempts. Lowell Narcisse and Justin McMillan still have a chance at the job, though, at least based on comments from head coach Ed Orgeron.
“We have certain things that we’re going to do with both quarterbacks," Orgeron said, according to Saturday Down South's Les East. "Obviously, certain plays all three quarterbacks are running. But then we have certain things where the skill set of the quarterback will demand that we do it.”
It's interesting to hear new coordinator Steve Ensminger's offense will still change based on which quarterback emerges, but the Tigers are clearly set on doing whatever it takes to find the most effective play from under center, something the program has been spotty with over the years.
LSU has to remake the units surrounding the quarterback as well. D.J. Chark is off to the NFL after catching 40 passes for 874 yards and three touchdowns. It's not easy to replace a guy who led the team in receiving while averaging north of 21 yards per catch, to say the least.
Jonathan Giles, a transfer who tallied 1,158 yards and 13 touchdowns with Texas Tech a year ago, is now the lead man for the wideout room, something Sam Spiegelman of SEC Country helped illustrate:
Sam Spiegelman @samspiegs
Jonathan Giles is now the leader in the WR room. So, why not ask for a breakdown of his counterparts? In his words: -Justin Jefferson is the Chad Ochocinco -Dee Anderson has the best 🙌🏽 -Racey McMath is his first call if he's getting jumped ➡️ https://t.co/pkJaonV3au https://t.co/KJ3LitU9lB
It's a nice nod toward the fact LSU wants to do better from a passing standpoint, though the unit as a whole will still need a strong performance from the running backs.
There, the task is replacing Derrius Guice, a potential top-10 pick who just rushed for 1,251 yards and 11 touchdowns last year.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire and Nick Brossette look like some of the primary names to know at the position, though neither understandably scored a touchdown last season. The former has turned heads in spring practices and scrimmages so far, and Orgeron said he "made a difference in our offense," according to Andrew Lopez of NOLA.com.
All of this goes without mentioning the defense much, but the Devin White-led unit isn't a concern by comparison. The linebacker has made a point to hint at his excitement for what the unit has in store for fans both Saturday and well into the season.
"As a defense as a whole, we're taking it to a whole other level. We won't be running the same three plays we were running the first two years," White said, according to Billy Embody of 247 Sports. "We got a lot of stuff that we won't even run in the spring game. We'll keep it simple. But come September when we’re playing Miami, we’ll pull some stuff out the hat."
Breiden Fehoko, another Texas Tech transfer, is a big part of the reason the defense looks solid heading into the season. He applied plenty of pressure off the edge last year and should do so again while starting across from Rashard Lawrence.
While the calls and formations should be vanilla as always, fans have a special event on their hands, and the coaches will get to put a new-look offense under a stress test in front of a large crowd. It's hard to ask for more in April as the Tigers look to strike a balance and go on a run in the SEC.