Kendell Beckwith’s LSU career is finished.
The senior linebacker will not play in the Tigers’ Citrus Bowl contest against Louisville on Dec. 31, LSU coach Ed Orgeron revealed Sunday evening in a news conference.
Beckwith, who is the Tigers’ team leader in tackles, injured his knee against Florida on Nov. 19 and did not play in LSU’s 54-39 victory versus Texas A&M on Thanksgiving.
Orgeron, also, said he is unsure if Beckwith will play in the Senior Bowl game in Mobile, Alabama, which takes place on January 28.
“I don’t know that,” Orgeron said. “I don’t know. I need to talk to Jack [Marucci] about the extent of it.”
Fournette, other injury notes
Junior running back Leonard Fournette status for the Citrus Bowl “day-to-day,” Orgeron said.
Fournette, a draft-eligible junior tailback, did not travel with the Tigers to College Station on Thanksgiving. Fournette is still nursing an ankle injury that has bothered him all season.
Orgeron said he will let Fournette try to practice during bowl preparation and then will make a decision from there.
“I don’t know that,” Orgeron said about Fournette playing against Louisville. “I hope he does. I think we’ll come back and see if he’s ready to go at practice. Hopefully he does.”
Since he is draft-eligible does Fournette want to play?
“Yep,” Orgeron said. “He’s been in every meeting, bright eyed and bushy tailed wanting to go. He’s always indicated to me that he wants to represent the LSU Tigers in the best way. I don’t see any reason for anything to happen. If the injury prevents him, it prevents him. I think if he’s well he’s going to be ready to go and he’s gone play.”
A host of other LSU players are also mending injures.
Senior wide receiver Travin Dural did not play versus Texas A&M with an undisclosed injury and senior cornerback Tre’Davious White and junior safety John Battle suffered injuries versus the Aggies.
Orgeron expects the trio of players to be available for the bowl game.
“We think they should be fine,” Orgeron said.
Sophomore defensive end Arden Key will also be available for the bowl game after he was suspended for violating team rules and did dress out against the Aggies.
Draft-eligible juniors still mulling pro careers decision
No draft-eligible juniors have expressed to Orgeron their decisions to leave yet.
“Some of them are still up in the air,” Orgeron said. “Some of them are kind of leaning one way or another.”
Orgeron said he’s been able to sit and talk with most of the potential early draftees and plans on continuing to “recruit” them to return to school.
LSU using backup quarterbacks in preparation against Lamar Jackson
Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson will be a “tremendous challenge” for the LSU defense, Orgeron — who will coach his first game as LSU’s official head coach in the Citrus Bowl — said.
Orgeron compared the sophomore, Heisman trophy candidate signal caller to NFL quarterback Michael Vick.
“He's a tremendous challenge,” Orgeron said. “We have a good defense. It ought to be an exciting matchup.”
Jackson, the ACC Player of The Year, has accounted for an Atlantic Coast Conference record 51 total touchdowns and has registered a Louisville record of 4,928 yards of total offense.
After finals week, LSU will begin practicing for the Cardinals next Thursday as Orgeron plans on using freshman quarterback Lindsey Scott and sophomore quarterback Justin McMillan as scout team quarterbacks.
“It’ll be some fundamental practices,” Orgeron said. “Then we’re going to have a week of preparation. Let the guys come home and come back do that week over again.”