LSU’s first two games of the season have been impressive to people outside of the LSU locker room, but after the Southeastern game, a game in which LSU only scored seven points in the second half after leading by 24 going into halftime, senior lineman Garrett Brumfield knew something needed to be said.
Brumfield needed the team to hear his thoughts after the game, something he knew couldn’t wait until Monday. The Tigers matchup against the No. 7 ranked Auburn Tigers will be LSU’s most daunting task to date and Brumfield needed his team to know that the Southeastern game wasn’t good enough.
“Some people call it a speech. I was just speaking from my heart, just telling them what I think they should know,” Brumfield said of his speech after the game. “We’re going to play a football game this weekend, that’s not going to be like the same football game (we played) last weekend.”
Brumfield is LSU’s only senior along the starting offensive line. The 6-foot-4, 303-pound left guard has the most experience along the line, starting 15 games and playing in 38 for the Tigers.
It has been key for Brumfield to be the anchor on the o-line with three new starters manning the right-tackle, right-guard, and center positions. Brumfield has been more of a vocal leader, something coach Ed Orgeron sees as a great attribute for his young team.
“His leadership has been critical,” Orgeron said of Brumfield. “His leadership, his communications, his smartness, his awareness and his ability to make adjustments on the sideline during the game. He's like a coach on the field.”
Brumfield was a second-team All-SEC pick last season, returning as the only full-time starter along the o-line from a year ago. The line will have its hands full against the Auburn defensive front, a line that that returns three of its starters from a year ago led by potential 2019 first-round NFL draft pick Marlon Davidson.
The Tigers will need to have solid protection if they hope to control Auburn’s aggressive pass rush that is tied with LSU for the most sacks in the Southeastern Conference with nine.
Brumfield is fast to point out that the team needs to get better and that it will be critical for the Tigers to learn from their first two games and come out better than last week.
“Of course, there are always going to be areas where you can polish things up,” Brumfield said about the Southeastern game. “Like I spoke about after the game, maybe some balls that weren’t completed and some protection things on ourselves. But overall, those are some things that can be fixed, just corrections that can be made. Of course, nobody plays a perfect game, including myself. There are some things that I'd like to polish up.”
The speech Brumfield gave after the Southeastern game resonated with his teammates, giving them the confidence that they can walk into Jordan-Hare stadium on Saturday afternoon and dominant a team that nearly everyone in the country is choosing to defeat LSU.
“Garrett gave a speech saying that it’s going to be a war (against Auburn) and for us to get our minds right and have our best week of practice,” nose tackle Breiden Fehoko said. “To have good leaders like that, I’m pretty positive about how we’re going to play this Saturday.”
When the Tigers enter the stadium on Saturday it will be apparent early if Brumfield’s speech hit home with the Tigers, a speech that could prove the LSU doubters wrong and cement LSU’s position as one of the best teams in the nation.