LSU surprised many college football fans last season when the Tigers won the SEC West over perennial favorites Alabama in coach Brian Kelly's first year as coach of the Tigers. Kelly arrived at LSU with high expectations, and his debut season only raised the level of the optimism that followed his arrival. What will he do for an encore? We'll get a glimpse on Saturday in the Tigers' annual spring game.
Quarterback Jayden Daniels came on strong late last season and was one of the driving forces behind the Tigers' return to national prominence. The dual-threat star was so impressive, in fact, that he is +1600 to win the Heisman Trophy, according to the latest odds from Caesars Sportsbook. Defensively, rising sophomore linebacker Harold Perkins Jr. burst onto the scene with 73 tackles -- 14 of which went for a loss. That performance earned him Freshman All-SEC honors from the conference's head coaches.
What should you be looking out for on Saturday? Let's take a look.
How to watch 2023 LSU spring game live
Date: Saturday, April 22 | Time: 2 p.m. ET
Location: Tiger Stadium -- Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Live Stream: SEC Network+
2023 LSU spring game storylines
1. Does a RB1 emerge? Daniels was the Tigers' leading rusher last year with 885 yards, and no running back had more than 536 yards. Granted, Josh Williams, Noah Cain, Armoni Goodwin and John Emery Jr. worked well as a committee, but it's risky to have Daniels take over the primary role. Kelly's history suggests that he wants a quarterback to move, but not necessarily one who's the focal point of the rushing attack. Will any of the running backs emerge as a true No. 1? Do any of them really have to if Kelly wants to go the committee route again? We should get a good idea of Kelly's plans on Saturday.
2. What's up with the secondary? The back end of the Tigers' defense was hit hard by attrition, and it's imperative that Kelly and defensive coordinator Matt House find some answers in what is becoming a predominantly pass-happy sport -- especially with some of the other teams within the division. Kelly hit the transfer portal in an effort to solve this problem by luring several potential impact players, including Denver Harris from Texas A&M, Darian Chestnut from Syracuse and Zy Alexander from Southeastern Louisiana. It's safe to say that the battle for the top spot on the depth chart is wide open, and it'll be interesting to see who trots out wiith the first team. That'll give fans an idea of what the depth chart looks like heading into summer workouts.
3. How good will the offensive line be? LSU returns a ton of talent and experience up front. Will Campbell and Emery Jones will likely occupy the tackle spots, while Miles Frazier and Garrett Dellinger take over at guard. Charles Turner is the front-runner to be the starter at center, but Marlon Martinez has been getting plenty of first team snaps as Turner recovers from a leg injury.
However, experience up front didn't stop Kelly from dabbling in the portal. Five new offensive lineman will join the group this summer, which should lead to more competition when fall camp opens. Is that a sign that Kelly might not be happy with where the unit is, or is it a case of him gobbling up talent in order to give him as many options as possible? As is the case with the secondary, Kelly should move his pieces around.