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LSU: 'We don’t have enough players healthy enough to have a full practice'

Ed Orgeron and Nick Saban discussed on Wednesday's SEC coaches teleconference what their teams are doing during the bye before next week's matchup.

Outside of an unusual pandemic-affected schedule in 2020 with the Alabama LSU game being played in December, it has been the norm for the Crimson Tide and Tigers to have a bye week the last weekend in October before the two teams matchup the first weekend of November. This year is no exception. 

What is unusual this year are the circumstances surrounding the LSU program. Last time the Tigers came into Tuscaloosa, they were ranked No. 1 on the way to an undefeated national championship season. 

Now less than two years later, Ed Orgeron will be out as head coach of LSU at the end of the season, and the Tigers don't even have enough healthy players to scrimmage. 

"For example this week, we’d usually go full pads today, and then tomorrow we’d have the tiger scrimmage, Tiger Bowl," Orgeron said on Wednesday's SEC coaches teleconference. "But we don’t have enough players to do the Tiger Bowl scrimmage tomorrow, and we don’t have enough players healthy enough to have a full practice today, so you have to make adjustments.”

According to Orgeron, the Tigers aren't even thinking about Alabama this week, they have to focus on resting and getting healthy on the off week.

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"A much needed rest for our team," Orgeron said. "We had a light practice yesterday. We have another light practice today, and then we’re going to give them the weekend off. [We’ll] get ready for Alabama next week. This week is about fixing LSU.” 

Some of the things Orgeron said LSU needs to fix are open-field tackling on defense and better blocking on slants and screens on offense. 

This is also a lighter week of practice for the Crimson Tide. Because there are fewer practices and no games over the weekend, it gives the Alabama coaching staff the opportunity to go out and do some in-season recruiting. 

"During the bye week we utilize Monday and Friday to have more coaches getting out to recruit," Alabama coach Nick Saban said during the teleconference. "We still try to keep in contact with as many prospects as we can."

The Crimson Tide will not begin practicing for LSU until Monday. 

Alabama and LSU will meet next Saturday Nov. 6 in Bryant-Denny Stadium. The game time has not yet been determined.