October 13, 2006
Baton Rouge, LA (CSTV U-WIRE) -- Every Monday LSU coach Les Miles has a weekly press conference followed by player interviews where players discuss the game from the past weekend and talk about their upcoming opponent.
For the most part, the players who come out of the locker room are those who significantly impacted the game or at least players that participated.
Reason enough why backup quarterback Matt Flynn slides into the locker room unnoticed by reporters week in and week out.
This week, however, a few reporters grabbed the junior before he could make it through the doors.
Maybe it was because of the negative feedback starter JaMarcus Russell has received from fans after his performance in Gainesville, Fla., against the University of Florida, or maybe it was the two quarterback system the Gators used that had Flynn swamped with questions.
Questions ranged from proving himself at the Peach Bowl last season to gauging how much resentment he felt without the starting role.
Flynn's answers followed each question, easily flowing out as though he knew beforehand what was going to be asked. Maybe he has gotten the same questions too much - mainly about his backup position at quarterback.
"It's my role on the team," Flynn said. "I've accepted it. I've learned a lot of patience here, and I've learned my role on this team."
If there are any plans of another two quarterback system like the Florida combination of senior Chris Leak and true freshman Tim Tebow, Flynn said he has not been informed.
"Our coaches don't want to do that," Flynn said. "It's not what's best for the team. It's not our system. It's [Florida's] system."
Despite no starting time, Flynn said he still prepares for any unexpected event such as last season after Russell went down with an arm injury in the Southeastern Conference Championship game on Dec. 3, 2005 against the University of Georgia, leaving Flynn to lead the Tigers to a 40-3 Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl victory on Dec. 20. Flynn was named the Most Valuable Player of the game after throwing for 196 yards including two touchdowns.
"The Peach Bowl is just something that good teams have," Flynn said. "When one person goes down someone is stepping in, not skipping a beat."
After feeling the spotlight and pressure of starting for LSU, Flynn said he would not consider changing schools to gain a consistent starting position.
Fast forward a year later and fans are beginning to chant his name in the stands in hopes of a change at quarterback after Russell's three interception performance in the Florida game Saturday. The coaches who do have the power to make the decision to flip the quarterback depth chart insisted Russell would remain the starter.
"Everything in this game is not the quarterback, and everything that happens bad in this game is not the quarterback," said offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher. "That's the ups and downs of playing. It's part of the game."
Referring to this weekend's game against the University of Kentucky, LSU coach Les Miles said Flynn would not see playing time until LSU secures victory.
"That's all I'm worried about right now," Miles said. "We're going to come in and play hard and beat Kentucky. That's the key."
Flynn agreed with the coach's decision because he believes the two losses this season were not because of an offensive problem.
"The two games we lost I think we've offensively moved the ball well," Flynn said. "We just haven't been able to finish. That's going to change. We're getting better. It's going to start coming together. We just have to be more disciplined as an offensive unit."
And Flynn will have a front row seat as he studies the coaches' play calls to Russell from the sidelines.
He said for his own reasons, he is OK with watching.
(C) 2006 The Daily Reveille via CSTV U-WIRE