Inside LSU Quarterback Myles Brennan's Mindset Ahead of First Start in Tiger Stadium
The moment Myles Brennan has been waiting for is finally here. But the LSU junior quarterback, who will be making his first start with the program after a three-year wait, is treating Saturday night's home opener against Mississippi State just like he has every other game the last three seasons.
"I've run out of Tiger Stadium a good number of times and just because I'm a starter, nothing's gonna change," Brennan said. "I'm still preparing like I would've the last three years and now I'm going to be the guy to run out on the field first. Nothing's gonna change from a preparation standpoint and I'm gonna be my calm, cool and collected self."
That's a pretty typical answer one might get from a veteran quarterback like Brennan who has waited in the wings for his opportunity. It's also that kind of attitude and perspective that will help Brennan navigate what is obviously a young team with inexperience on both sides of the ball.
As the quarterback, one of his jobs is to bring that stability to the offense which in turn transfers to the other components of the game. With so many fresh faces on the roster, Brennan said each week is about growth and getting a little bit better every day to eventually reach the lofty goals this team still has.
"We have a bunch of fresh faces, a lot of guys who, as Coach O likes to say, haven't been in the fire yet," Brennan said. "We're gonna have to learn and develop week by week. We have a lot of talent on offense, defense and special teams but we're relatively young in terms of experience. That's not gonna stop us and we're gonna take it a game at a time and learn and build each week."
One of the strengths of Brennan's game that's been highly publicized is his arm strength. Even when he was still filling in his body as a freshman in 2017, that part of his game was obvious when inserted into the lineup. On Monday, coach Ed Orgeron said that Brennan's arm was stronger than Joe Burrow's was last season.
"He was very accurate with the football in all three scrimmages. The only thing that we don't know and I do believe that he's going to do very well is how he's going to do in the fire, and the only way to know that is put him in the fire," Orgeron said. "I trust Myles. He's become a team leader. Short passing game is his strength. The deep ball is something that he is very good at, but I think that takes time for him and his receivers to get the timing down and hopefully he can improve in that throughout the year."
But one of the developments he's made, at least through the eyes of safety JaCoby Stevens, has been the confident demeanor in which he carries himself on the field and his poise in the pocket.
"I think one of the things that's gonna surprise a lot of people is his confidence in the pocket and his confidence in running the offense," Stevens said. "How he carries himself in the pocket, how he carries himself as a quarterback, you'll be able to tell that he sat behind Joe Burrow."
That confident demeanor was something Brennan has always had, dating back to his time as a high schooler at St. Stanislaus where he set pretty much every Mississippi passing record. But sitting behind Burrow the last two seasons was a different experience for Brennan.
“Joe came in here and he did his thing, and what he did was great. And it's my turn now to do my thing and write my own story,” Brennan said. “So, I learned a lot from Joe, and I took things that he did well, and I use them to better myself."
Waking up every morning as the QB1 for the LSU Tigers makes the three year wait worthwhile. Whether it was sitting behind Danny Etling and Burrow or the three different offenses he had to learn in three seasons, Brennan never let doubt creep into the back of his mind.
And now he gets to show the world what he's made of.
"I never had any doubt that I'd get to where I'm at today, that's why I'm still here," Brennan said. "When I came in as a freshman my goal was to be the starter and I worked for that every single day. I was denied that for three years but I wasn't gonna let adversity get in my way and stop me from achieving my dream."