Brian Kelly and the LSU Tigers are gearing up for their Top 10 showdown against Florida State in Orlando, with retribution on their minds following last year's defeat. In this star-studded clash on both sides of the field, the defensive spotlight will shine brightly on LSU's Harold Perkins and Florida State's Jared Verse.
Verse, a Preseason All-America selection, ranks among the nation's top prospects for the 2024 NFL Draft as a standout defensive end. Returning for another season in Tallahassee, the Seminoles' defensive maestro aims to elevate his draft stock into the coveted Top 5 discussion.
As for the Tigers, the Harold Perkins Show is set to unfold. While he primarily trained as an inside linebacker during the offseason, it's important to note that he will be a versatile force, applying relentless pressure on Florida State's quarterback, Jordan Travis, and wreaking havoc all over the field.
Here's why all eyes will be on Perkins during this consequential game:
During this offseason, Perkins underwent a transformation into his ideal position of inside linebacker under the guidance of defensive coordinator Matt House and his coaching staff. In contrast to his prior role as a "pass rush specialist," LSU now envisions him in a more specialized capacity. Brian Kelly emphasized that although Perkins assumes primarily inside linebacker responsibilities, opponents must maintain constant vigilance and "account for him" on every single play. The coaching staff is committed to optimizing his skill set.
Brian Kelly told reporters, "We’re going to be in really good shape internally. Maason just gives you a dominating presence, but we feel good about the middle of our defense. Harold is going to be able to impact the game with everything we’re going to do with him,” Kelly said on Monday. “He’s going to be moving around. He’s not just going to be at inside linebacker. You’re going to have to find him and you’re going to have to account for him."