Wednesday, October 19, 2016

The first milestone football game for Ed Orgeron LSU fighting tiger on the way back to the top.

Thomas Williams · 

The first milestone football game for Ed Orgeron LSU fighting tiger on the way back to the top. LSU vs Ole Miss always seems to mean a lot to these two very proud college football programs. So go to Hell Ole Miss! go to Hell!!

The art of shedding blocks: LSU defenders are thriving at a key component

J.D. Moore wasn’t always the linebacker-seeking, muscle-bound junior fullback you see today.
Moved from tight end a couple of years ago, Moore needed seasoning as a fullback before developing into LSU’s starter last year. Specifically, he needed to learn how to combat and prevent a defender from shedding his block.
Former LSU linebacker Lamar Louis was there to help.
“He’s just a hammer,” Moore said of Louis. “He was so big, and I was just learning the position, and I remember numerous times running in there and thinking I was about to lay my best block, and he’d shed.”
Moore is now better equipped to handle block-shedding defenders, but LSU’s linebackers are still shoving aside offensive players on Saturdays, avoiding would-be blockers to make plays that have Dave Aranda’s unit one of the nation’s best.
The shedding of a block is an overshadowed art in football, a key component to LSU’s success defensively and something on which middle linebacker Kendell Beckwith, at the center of the unit, thrives. Beckwith showed his expertise on the subject during a career-high 15-tackle win against Southern Miss last week, shedding eight blocks in the first half alone.
He’s got another shot to flash those skills when No. 25 LSU (4-2, 2-1 Southeastern) hosts Ole Miss (3-3, 1-2) at 8 p.m. Saturday. It’s a clash between two teams with opposing strengths. For the Rebels, it’s offense. They’re 20th in scoring. For the Tigers, it’s defense. They’re fourth in scoring defense.
One of the reasons: shedding blocks.
How a player goes about shedding a block is different on each level of defense — line, linebackers, secondary — but the goal is the same: avoid the block at all cost. On the defensive line, that’s normally done with a “shrug” move, said Greg Gilmore, LSU’s starting nose tackle. This involves grabbing or pressing your hand or hands on an offensive player and pushing them aside.
“Two ways to shed blocks: two-handed release and a one-handed release,” Gilmore said. "It’s all about leverage. They’re pushing on you. You create counter-momentum."
It sounds easy, sure, but Gilmore, at 305 pounds, is trying to shed blocks from guys like 330-pound guard Josh Boutte. On the perimeter, a guy like cornerback Donte Jackson, 5-11, 170 pounds, is attempting to shed blocks from receivers who are 5 inches taller and 25 pounds heavier. Linebackers are dodging or shedding blocks from 250-pound fullbacks or 310-pound offensive guards.
Jackson uses a different tactic than Gilmore, just like Beckwith uses a different method than Jackson.
“I’m not a huge guy, so I’m going to be smaller than most guys that block me, but I’m as aggressive as most guys that try to block me,” Jackson said. “Most of the time, I use my quickness and aggressiveness. It’s never failed me.”


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