Is Les Miles the new Bob Stoops?
Les Miles has become Bob Stoops.
Oh, OK. Not exactly Bob Stoops. Miles still wears the ball cap, not the visor. Then, there’s the difference of team colors, Miles being partial to LSU’s purple and gold instead of OU’s crimson and cream.
But other than that, Miles has become Stoops. He is now the daredevil that Stoops used to be.
Miles is now the riverboat gambler of college football coaches.
The former Oklahoma State coach must have steel innards. These past few weeks, he’s pushed every button and every extreme to keep his LSU squad in the national title hunt.
Three weeks ago against Florida, Miles decided that his squad would go for it on fourth down not one, not twice, not even three times. The Tigers went for it five times. FIVE TIMES.
Who knows what’s more remarkable — that Miles made five fourth-down calls or that the Tigers made it every time.
LSU beat Florida, by the way, with a late game-winning drive that included two of those fourth-down conversions.
Then after a triple-overtime loss to Kentucky, Miles and LSU had perhaps the biggest late-game gamble of them all Saturday against Auburn.
Trailing 24-23 in the game’s final seconds, LSU only needed to kick a field goal. That would’ve been the safe play. That would’ve been the preferred play. That could’ve won the game, too.
Miles decided to go another route. Even though the clock had ticked below 20 seconds, he allowed the offense one more shot at the end zone. He thought the Tigers still had time for a play AND a field goal attempt if they needed it.
He was right — barely.
When Demetrius Byrd hauled in a Matt Flynn pass in the corner of the end zone for the game-winning touchdown, one second remained on the clock.
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