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Mettenberger already haunted by stunning collapse

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08:27 AM ET 01.01 | The last-second Chick-fil-A Bowl loss to Clemson weighs heavy on the shoulders of Zach Mettenberger, leader of an offense that picked up 219 yards on a mere 48 plays. It was clear early LSU was going to have some problems. Mettenberger, who had come on strong in LSU's final four games, was sacked three times in a four-play span in the first quarter. ... "Our gameplan was really good, everything we wanted to run was there," Mettenberger said. "We had a right tackle (Vadal Alexander) that had an off night tonight. It sucks for tonight but we're going to get through this and be better next year. This whole year is going to eat at me for the whole off season. I didn't play how I wanted to all year."

The Times-Picayune

Zach Mettenberger, Icon Sports Zach Mettenberger, Icon Sports
January 1, 2013  09:01 AM ET

Damn LSU gave up over 440 yards on defense and had only 220 yards of total offense!!! Give Clemson credit, they came back and beat LSU. Congrats to Clemson and their fans.

January 1, 2013  09:18 AM ET

They'll be hailing Venables...same team that gave up 70+ to WVa in last year's bowl.

Question is, has Clemson's defense improved that much or was it a matter of poor LSU offense?

January 1, 2013  09:25 AM ET
QUOTE(#2):

They'll be hailing Venables...same team that gave up 70+ to WVa in last year's bowl.Question is, has Clemson's defense improved that much or was it a matter of poor LSU offense?

DC, Happy New Year!!! Yes I think Clemson's defense improved, but maybe a better question is what the hell happened to that "great" LSU defense???? They gave up over 440 yards on defense!!!!

January 1, 2013  09:28 AM ET

I didn't see this coming!!! I thought LSU would beat Clemson!!! This game was very exciting at the end, it's the best bowl game I have seen so far this year. I wish I could say the same about USC yesterday, damn did they ever crap the bed!!!

January 1, 2013  09:35 AM ET
QUOTE(#4):

I didn't see this coming!!! I thought LSU would beat Clemson!!! This game was very exciting at the end, it's the best bowl game I have seen so far this year. I wish I could say the same about USC yesterday, damn did they ever crap the bed!!!

I don't know if their heart was in playing the game, OT. They went out very meekly. Feel for Barkely. He came back for this?

January 1, 2013  09:44 AM ET
QUOTE(#5):

I don't know if their heart was in playing the game, OT. They went out very meekly. Feel for Barkely. He came back for this?

Sittlichk, Happy New Year!!! Yeah I agree, but damn USC looked like <hit yesterday, No excuses coming from this camp!!! LK has to take the blame for this game (and the season), they was no passion coming form the Trojans yesterday!!!!

January 1, 2013  09:46 AM ET
QUOTE(#5):

I don't know if their heart was in playing the game, OT. They went out very meekly. Feel for Barkely. He came back for this?

True...and LSU may have been in the same boat but to a lesser degree. They got shafted out of the Cotton Bowl. They finished ahead of A&M but got kicked to the chicken bowl...probably just because aggie is in Texas. Hell, aggie and Zero U been playing each other a lot the last few years. Would have been good to see sumpin' different. JMO

January 1, 2013  09:48 AM ET

First off, Congratulations to Clemson as they won the game and had an 11 win season.

I don't believe the LSU game plan was good and the execution was not there. The offense has no imagination. If Mettenberger cannot run a more complicated offense then he belongs on the bench. LSU needs an offensive coordinator in the worst way. Please, hard headed Les Miles, face facts and go out an get an offensive coordinator who can make better use of the talent on the team. I don't know who made the calls on the last LSU series but Les Miles has to take the blame for that gaff. LSU ran plays that allowed Clemson to save all of their timeouts and that cost LSU in the worst way.

As to the LSU defense they gave it their all but were worn out due to the lack of production by the offense that ran a mere 48 plays the whole game. Both of the great defensive ends were out of the game for the last Clemson drive.

Again, I am making no excuses, Clemson came back and won the game with good coaching and execution. LSU did give it's all but was limited by poor coaching. What galls me for 2013 is that extension given Les Miles which means we will have poor play calling for 5 more years if Les lasts that long as the HC.

January 1, 2013  09:52 AM ET

LSU's defense was just fine...as good as it gets. Keep in mind they were on the field most the game and if you count plays, it equates to darn near 2 games worth of defense! The biggest problem for LSU was their offense. Pitiful. And for Mettenberger to openly blame his right tackle like that is so low class I can't believe it!

Hey Zach...how about this: If you don't overthrow your receiver by 5 yards on a 5 yard out pattern on your last drive, you win the game!!! My God...my sister makes that throw!!

Hey Les...how about this: If you take a knee three times the last time you had the ball, you use up Clemson's time outs and they can't make that last drive. You win the game!

I don't know who was calling what at that game, but that was pitiful. 2nd and two and you throw the ball twice??? (if you can call what Mettenberger did a 'pass')

January 1, 2013  10:01 AM ET

Les Miles, Les Miles, shame on you. You and your staff probably cost LSU an 11 win season with your play calling. First off, play calling lacked imagination all during the game. LSU needs help here in the worst way.

If you want to be a gamble, Les, know when to fold. On the last series you gambled on a pass on first down and caught Clemson off guard and got 8 yards leaving you two down to run the ball and get 2 yards for a first down. Even if you don't get the first down you made Clemson burn timeouts and took more time off the clock. Instead you go for the pass and Mettenberger misses an open receiver (Peyton Manning he is not ). Then you think you will fool them again by passing yet again and this fails meaning you took little time off the clock and Clemson conserves all of their remaining timeouts. You forgot about the great defense that has been on the field most of the game because your poor conservative play calling resulted in only 48 plays the whole game. That my man, is a mere 12 plays per quarter.

Thanks to the play of the defense early in the game LSU was not embarrassed in this game. LSU has some really good players coming in but they need better coaching.

PLEASE LSU see your problem and get an offensive coordinator. Les Miles, make a New Year resolution that you will not be a gambler as you do not know the gambler's rules.

Savor your victory, Clemson, you deserved and got that WIN.

HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL!!! MAY WE HAVE HEALTH AND PROSPERITY.

January 1, 2013  10:16 AM ET
QUOTE(#10):

Les Miles, Les Miles, shame on you. You and your staff probably cost LSU an 11 win season with your play calling. First off, play calling lacked imagination all during the game. LSU needs help here in the worst way. If you want to be a gamble, Les, know when to fold. On the last series you gambled on a pass on first down and caught Clemson off guard and got 8 yards leaving you two down to run the ball and get 2 yards for a first down. Even if you don't get the first down you made Clemson burn timeouts and took more time off the clock. Instead you go for the pass and Mettenberger misses an open receiver (Peyton Manning he is not ). Then you think you will fool them again by passing yet again and this fails meaning you took little time off the clock and Clemson conserves all of their remaining timeouts. You forgot about the great defense that has been on the field most of the game because your poor conservative play calling resulted in only 48 plays the whole game. That my man, is a mere 12 plays per quarter. Thanks to the play of the defense early in the game LSU was not embarrassed in this game. LSU has some really good players coming in but they need better coaching. PLEASE LSU see your problem and get an offensive coordinator. Les Miles, make a New Year resolution that you will not be a gambler as you do not know the gambler's rules. Savor your victory, Clemson, you deserved and got that WIN. HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL!!! MAY WE HAVE HEALTH AND PROSPERITY.

Very good comment!!!!! LSU needs a new OC!!! LSU only had 9 (yes 9) first downs. Their T.O.P was 23: 39 compared to Clemson"s 36:21!!!!! Also what happened to LSU's defense, they gave up over 440 yards to Clemson. LSU had a 12 point lead with 5 minutes to go in the game!!! In some ways LSU's collapse was worse than USC against GT, but USC was never in the game!!!

January 1, 2013  10:20 AM ET
QUOTE(#9):

LSU's defense was just fine...as good as it gets. Keep in mind they were on the field most the game and if you count plays, it equates to darn near 2 games worth of defense! The biggest problem for LSU was their offense. Pitiful. And for Mettenberger to openly blame his right tackle like that is so low class I can't believe it!Hey Zach...how about this: If you don't overthrow your receiver by 5 yards on a 5 yard out pattern on your last drive, you win the game!!! My God...my sister makes that throw!!Hey Les...how about this: If you take a knee three times the last time you had the ball, you use up Clemson's time outs and they can't make that last drive. You win the game! I don't know who was calling what at that game, but that was pitiful. 2nd and two and you throw the ball twice??? (if you can call what Mettenberger did a 'pass')

Actually I agree with your comment!!! I've always said a "good offense is the best defense", as it keeps your defense off the field, but nevertheless, you have to give Clemson credit for coming back and winning the game!!!

January 1, 2013  10:21 AM ET
QUOTE(#2):

Question is, has Clemson's defense improved that much or was it a matter of poor LSU offense?

Or just the right mix of both.

January 1, 2013  10:23 AM ET
QUOTE(#5):

I don't know if their heart was in playing the game, OT. They went out very meekly. Feel for Barkely. He came back for this?

Just two words for lamenting USC fans: Lame Kitten

January 1, 2013  10:24 AM ET
QUOTE(#7):

True...and LSU may have been in the same boat but to a lesser degree. They got shafted out of the Cotton Bowl. They finished ahead of A&M but got kicked to the chicken bowl...probably just because aggie is in Texas. Hell, aggie and Zero U been playing each other a lot the last few years. Would have been good to see sumpin' different. JMO

Zero U will blast the Tampons.

January 1, 2013  10:28 AM ET
QUOTE(#8):

The offense has no imagination. If Mettenberger cannot run a more complicated offense then he belongs on the bench. LSU needs an offensive coordinator in the worst way.

This problem cost you the NC last year. Granted the Bama defense was one of the best in CF history, but the lack of imagination on part of Les & company was truly stunning.

January 1, 2013  10:28 AM ET

Oh what the hell ..................quint

January 1, 2013  10:31 AM ET
QUOTE(#9):

LSU's defense was just fine...as good as it gets. Keep in mind they were on the field most the game and if you count plays, it equates to darn near 2 games worth of defense! The biggest problem for LSU was their offense. Pitiful. And for Mettenberger to openly blame his right tackle like that is so low class I can't believe it!Hey Zach...how about this: If you don't overthrow your receiver by 5 yards on a 5 yard out pattern on your last drive, you win the game!!! My God...my sister makes that throw!!Hey Les...how about this: If you take a knee three times the last time you had the ball, you use up Clemson's time outs and they can't make that last drive. You win the game! I don't know who was calling what at that game, but that was pitiful. 2nd and two and you throw the ball twice??? (if you can call what Mettenberger did a 'pass')

Spot on. Les was baffled by the rules of the game once again. When Clemson crossed mid field and got within fg range what the hell was he saving those timeouts for???

January 1, 2013  10:32 AM ET
QUOTE(#10):

HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL!!! MAY WE HAVE HEALTH AND PROSPERITY.

Right back at you

 
January 1, 2013  10:35 AM ET

Damn I am having a great conversation with myself in here today.

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