Miles on Isaac: 'Been through this before'

August, 27, 2012
8/27/12
3:36
PM ET
BATON ROUGE, La. -- Even with Tropical Storm Isaac bearing down on the Louisiana coast, there was enough LSU football-related news at Les Miles' first press luncheon Monday to keep the talk mostly off the weather.

As for Isaac, which is barreling toward the southeast Louisiana coast -- it is expected to make landfall as a Category 2 hurricane, then make an impact on Baton Rouge on Wednesday -- Miles said no plan has been decided on, but options would be discussed with the players later Monday. LSU opens at home Saturday against North Texas, which would give Baton Rouge about three days to clean up if the storm passes through town as expected.

"We've been through this before," said Miles.

His first game as LSU's coach, in 2005, was postponed because of Hurricane Katrina and the Tigers wound up moving a home game against Arizona State to Tempe. Three years later, the Tigers moved up the start of their opener against Appalachian State to morning to escape impending bad weather.

Josh Dworaczyk, LSU's sixth-year senior offensive lineman, was part of the 2008 team.

"We have a great facility here," he said. "We're going to use it every chance we get."

Not only does LSU have an indoor facility that would allow the Tigers to practice in bad weather, Dworaczyk noted that LSU is one of the best places to hunker down in Baton Rouge during a storm.

"One of the fortunate things about the situation is LSU having underground electricity," Dworaczyk said. "We lost power for a couple of hours (during Gustav) but some people lost it for an entire week."

Dworaczyk is among the Tigers who now live off-campus. He said he is prepared to relocate to LSU if he loses power.

Practice was moved earlier Tuesday, and Miles said he will work with the LSU administration regarding team activities as the storm approaches. LSU's campus is closed Tuesday and Wednesday.

"We are continuously monitoring weather conditions and considering potential impacts as we prepare for this weekend's football season opener in Tiger Stadium and other athletic events," he said in a news release. "At this time we are planning to hold the game at 6 p.m. on Saturday as scheduled. We will evaluate the impact of the storm and its aftermath as we learn more throughout the week."

Muncie, Blue, Downs surprise starters: Miles confirmed that running back Michael Ford and linebacker Tahj Jones have academic issues that are going through an appeals process. Junior Luke Muncie is penciled in at the strong-side linebacker spot expected to go to Jones all fall. Ford is listed No. 3 on the running back depth chart behind Alfred Blue and Kenny Hilliard.

Spencer Ware, last year's starter, is No. 4 on the depth chart. Ford and Spencer were the Tigers' two leading rushers last season.

"Frankly (Blue and Hilliard) have had the best camp," Miles said.

Muncie getting a starting nod is probably the biggest surprise coming out of camp. He appeared headed to being a reserve capable of playing any of the linebacker spots after he competed with both Lamin Barrow on the weakside and played for an injured Jones on the strong side during spring drills.

"He's definitely ready," middle linebacker Kevin Minter said of Muncie. "He's been talking about this since the spring, about this season coming up. The guy is good."

LSU's offensive depth chart also showed Odell Beckham Jr., James Wright and Jarvis Landry as the top three receivers. Stephen Rivers, and not Penn State transfer Rob Bolden, was the No. 2 quarterback behind Zach Mettenberger

On defense, Josh Downs won the starting left tackle spot over Anthony Johnson and Jalen Mills, a true freshman, is the starting cornerback. Craig Loston, who has battled injuries through August camp, is listed as the starter at strong safety.

Gary Laney | email

Reporter, GeauxTigerNation

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