BATON ROUGE, LA — Top-ranked LSU continued its preparations Saturday’s homecoming contest against Western Kentucky with a “fast-paced” workout here Wednesday on a chilly afternoon at the Charles McClendon Practice Facility.
LSU welcomes the Hilltoppers to Tiger Stadium for a 6 p.m. contest on Saturday. The LSU-Western Kentucky contest has been dubbed the “Purple Game” and fans are encouraged to wear purple to Tiger Stadium on Saturday night.
The game will be televised nationally on ESPNU. LSU, winners of 10 straight dating back to last season, is 9-0 overall and stands atop the Southeastern Conference Western Division with a 6-0 league record.
Western Kentucky, a member of the Sun Belt Conference, has won five straight and brings a 5-4 overall mark into the game. The Hilltoppers are just one game out of first place in the Sun Belt Conference.
Saturday’s game marks the first meeting between LSU and Western Kentucky in football.
“We’ve had a good week of work so far,” LSU coach Les Miles said following Wednesday’s workout. “There’s been a lot accomplished this week. We had a good effort today. The practice was fast-paced and the players are having fun. They are looking forward to being back in Tiger Stadium for a night game and to facing Western Kentucky.”
Against Western Kentucky, the Tigers will be faced with trying to contain running back Bobby Rainey, who ranks third in the nation with 1,169 rushing yards in nine games. Rainey, who has rushed for at least 100 yards in eight games this year, also has 298 receiving yards.
“I think he’s a very talented back,” Miles said of Rainey. “He runs hard. He’s extremely shifty and a very capable running back. He’s a very talented guy.”
The Tigers will look to contain Rainey with a defense that ranks among the nation’s top 10 in four categories - rush defense (2nd at 78.78), scoring defense (2nd at 10.89, total defense (3rd at 256.22), and pass efficiency defense (4th with 96.73 rating). LSU has allowed just one team to rush for more than 100 yards this year. Last week, LSU held Alabama All-America running back Trent Richardson to just 3.9 yards a carry.
Offensively, Miles said the Tigers will continue to play both Jarrett Lee and Jordan Jefferson. Lee has started all nine games for LSU this year and he’s thrown 13 touchdown passes compared to just three interceptions. Last week, Jefferson came off the bench and helped lead the Tigers to the overtime win over Alabama.
“It’s my same two guys,” Miles said of Lee and Jefferson. “I’m looking forward to them playing. They’re working hard and understand the position that they’re in.”
The Tigers will practice again on Thursday followed by a walk-thru on Friday afternoon.