LSU: Later Doucet
LSU wide receiver Early Doucet missed Saturday's 44-0 thrashing of Middle Tennessee, and head coach Les Miles said Monday that he expects Doucet to miss a bunch more. The "pretty significant injury," about which Miles did not elaborate, could keep the senior out for multiple games, which sounds off groans among the LSU faithful -- Doucet finished last season second on the team with 59 catches for 772 yards and eight scores. Miles would not comment on radio reports that the injury hampering the team's most experienced receiver is a groin pull -- all we know is that it's "pretty significant."
After Dwayne Bowe and Craig Davis departed for the NFL, Doucet became the Tigers' primary receiver and a return specialist. The unspecified injury occured in last Friday's practice, a walk-through when players go over substitutions and other non-contact drills to prepare mentally for the game. The players were not even wearing pads as the walk-through does not require any contact. Doucet apparently made a quick movement that pulled something the wrong way, but did not involve hitting another player.
"It just popped on him," Miles said. "It would certianly operate in the unusual category."
Saturday was a fine time to be without Doucet, as No. 2 LSU did not need (or have) many of their top players to shut out Middle Tennessee. But with No. 12 South Carolina coming to town next week for an SEC showdown, this week is not a good one to be without Doucet. Or fifth-year senior quarterback Matt Flynn. Or fifth-year senior offensive guard Will Arnold, all of whom missed last week's game.
Flynn sprained his ankle in the win over Virginia Tech on Sept. 8 and is still listed as day-to-day, but Miles said that he wants to make sure Flynn is fully back to form before putting him in harm's way on the field. And with sophomore backup Ryan Perrilloux completing 20 of 25 passes for 298 yards and three touchdowns last week, Miles may be in no particular hurry. But let's just remember that South Carolina's defense should be a cut above Middle Tennessee's, and Perrilloux does not have Flynn's experience or poise. The Tigers would do well to get Flynn back in the pocket before the real games begin.
Arnold is still fighting a viral infection that has affected his knees and Miles is not optimistic that he'll be back this week. Arnold has also suffered two knee injuries and missed most of last season with an ankle injury.