BATON ROUGE – While allowing that the “passing, temporary, but fulfilling” spirit of Christmas still has a place at LSU, Coach Les Miles said Wednesday the Tigers would focus on butting heads as much as possible as preparations for Penn State continue.
Miles expressed himself satisfied with the pace and intensity of practice Wednesday, the third day in which LSU has drilled indoors because of saturated fields. No. 12 LSU (9-3) will face the No. 13 Nittany Lions (10-2) in the Capital One Bowl in Orlando on New Year’s Day, a game pitting programs close in prestige and temperament.
During his career, and especially since he arrived at LSU in 2005, Miles has an sterling record in bowl games, season openers and the like. His Tigers teams have won four consecutive bowl games, a record that suggests Miles thrives when given time to prepare.
That record stands in contrast to a November loss at Ole Miss, which Miles reiterated was a humbling Saturday but hardly the measure of a program seeking double digit wins for the fourth time in five years.
“It’s certainly something that I didn’t enjoy, but I think our football team and our program understands disappointment and the ability to play above that, to respond, ” Miles said. “You have about three crisises, four crisises a year. But in any event a team has to play beyond what would be accepted and predicted feelings, and we’ve done that well here. I would expect this bowl game would be another time in which this team will play extremely well.”