A month from today, BYU will begin the second season of the Kalani Sitake era at home against Portland State.
It will probably be a cooker, because the game will kick off at 1 p.m. MT and will be televised by ESPN. The Cougars reported to training camp Wednesday and will have their first practice on Thursday afternoon.
Obviously, everybody will talk about Portland State, and try as much as possible to ignore BYU’s second opponent in 2017 — the nationally ranked LSU Tigers of the SEC.
However, LSU is already talking about BYU, because that encounter on Sept. 2 in Houston is the Tigers’ first game.
And already, LSU coach Ed Orgeron is talking about the ages of BYU’s players, mixed with a little exaggeration.
“Let me say this about BYU — 24, 25, 26-year-old guys,” Orgeron told a Rotary Club crowd in Baton Rouge on Wednesday, according to a report in The Advocate newspaper. “A lot of them married. Don’t have to worry about curfew. They’ll have 4-year-old sons walking into the game. Have a lot of respect for them.”
The Advocate reporter Ross Dellenger tweeted that Orgeron’s comments about BYU weren’t meant “as a slight or shade,” while noting in the article that LSU will treat its camp — which begins Monday — like an NFL preseason camp.
“We will have practices during the week and have what we will call preseason games right there in Tiger Stadium,” Orgerson said. “We will have four of them. Treat is just like the NFL. Our fifth will be our first game against BYU.”
Most Las Vegas bookmakers have installed LSU as a 14-point favorite over BYU in a game that will be played at Houston’s NRG Stadium, which is about a four-hour drive from Baton Rouge. The Tigers expect a 4-1 or 5-1 crowd advantage, much as Oklahoma had in 2009 at the Dallas Cowboys’ stadium in Arlington, Texas.