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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Chavis: ‘I’m excited about walking in there as an Aggie’

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Photo by Lawrence Smelser

John Chavis said he is excited to face LSU on Saturday. Chavis coached the Tigers from 2009-2014.

A&M defensive coordinator John Chavis left LSU last year to join Texas A&M’s vacant defensive coordinator slot. With the two teams facing off in their annual matchup, the Aggies say they aren’t letting the tension affect their focus.

Chavis said there will not be any extra emotion coming from him on Saturday, and while he did enjoy his time at LSU, he has moved on.

“This is going to be about Texas A&M and LSU on the football field,” Chavis said Tuesday’s weekly news conference. “I don’t know what’s going on and I’m not concerned with it. You move on. I spent six years in Baton Rouge, enjoyed my time there, most of the people were good to me, it was a great experience, won a conference championship, went 13-0, a lot of good memories. But football is football. My focus is on Texas A&M and getting them prepared to play this week.”

Chavis and the rest of the A&M coaching staff will have their hands full trying to stop an LSU offense that amassed over 500 yards last weekend against Ole Miss. The Tigers’ attack starts with running back Leonard Fournette and their rushing attack, which is statistically the best in the SEC.

“He’s one of the better if not the best backs in the country, not taking anything away from anybody else,” Chavis said. “The year I was around him, he’s an outstanding young man. He’s a first-class act, very talented, very blessed with talent and he’s worked to make it work around him. He’ll pose a challenge for anybody that’s facing him.”

Head coach Kevin Sumlin said while Fournette is incredible, the Tigers’ offense has a host of other playmakers, particularly thier wide receiver.

“[Travin] Dural and Malachi Dupre on the perimeter are tremendous weapons,” Sumlin said. “Those guys can score points quickly. So we’ve got to eliminate the big play and keep things in front of us.”

On the offensive side of the ball, Kyle Allen will go into Death Valley as the starting quarterback for the first time in weeks. Offensive coordinator Jake Spavital said he continues to be impressed with Allen’s perseverance that he exhibits on a weekly basis.

“The kid battles,” Spavital said. “You’ve got to give him a lot of credit for how he handles every situation. He comes in every day wanting to get better, not letting things affect him and trying to improve each day. He’s playing at a high level right now.”

Spavital also said that even though Jake Hubenak was the backup last week, the competition for the second-string gig remains open and that true freshman Kyler Murray is doing well.

“He’s in a good spot,” Spavital said of Murray. “It’s been a roller-coaster in the quarterback room this year, a lot of highs and lows, and each of them is just supporting whoever goes out there and trying to improve their game as well. For Kyler specifically, he’s in a good spot.”

Chavis said he’s ready to return to Tiger Stadium, but this time in maroon.  
“I’ll tell you this: I’m excited about walking in there as an Aggie,” Chavis said.

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