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Birmingham, AL (WIAT)-UAB is faced with a large task entering the the second week of the college football season. Their opponent is No. 12 LSU but the Blazers are focused on self improvement.
“What we are focused on is getting ourselves better,” said UAB head coach Garrick McGee. “We have to spend the next few days really studying that film, figuring out who we are, what direction we want to go in, and make sure we run out there and make sure we play the best that we can play.”
UAB defensive end Diaheem Watkins added, “Eliminate mistakes. Just going hard, just giving more effort, and just really concentrating, trying to learn the concept, trying to learn the defense we are going to run and not making as many mistakes as we made against Troy.”
These two teams have only met on one other occasion. It was a memorable 2000 season for Watson Brown and the Blazers who defeated Nick Saban’s Tigers 13-10 in Baton Rouge. Now under the direction of Les Miles, Garrick McGee knows what to expect from this LSU program.
“They are going to be the same year in and year out,” said McGee. “Very aggressive on defense and they are going to look to control the ball on offense. That is the philosophy that Coach Miles has and we know that is not going to go away.”
The intimidation factor at Death Valley is also here to stay but the Blazers are approaching it just like any other game.
“I feel like all those people, 90,000 or something, I am thinking all of them are there for me so I am going to have that kind of attitude and just go have fun,” said Watkins.
UAB wide receiver Jamarcus Nelson said, “I am very excited but at the same time we have been in situations like that before. Ohio State, 100,000 [fans], Florida my freshman year and also South Carolina last year so it’s not a big deal.”
Not a big deal for Jamarcus Nelson. The junior was named Conference USA’s Special Teams player of the week after setting a school record with a 97 yard kick return for a touchdown. He also posted 367 all purpose yards in his 2013 debut, the most in the country.
UAB and LSU kick off Saturday night at 6 p.m.