And then there was 1, Amigo — LSU wide receiver Terrace Marshall Jr.
BATON ROUGE — The Three Amigos tore up the West ... of the Southeastern Conference last season, then the rest of the SEC, and finally the nation for LSU.
Justin Jefferson caught 111 passes for 1,540 yards and 18 touchdowns in 15 games.
Ja'Marr Chase caught 84 passes and led the nation in receiving yards at 1,780 yards and in receiving touchdowns at 20 in 14 games.
And Terrace Marshall Jr. caught 46 passes for 671 yards and 13 touchdowns in just 12 games as the Tigers went 15-0 and won the national championship with one of the greatest passing attacks in NCAA history and Heisman Trophy winning quarterback Joe Burrow. But Burrow was a senior and is now in the NFL as the first pick of the draft at Cincinnati.
Jefferson left LSU shortly after his junior season in 2019-20 and was a first-round pick by Minnesota in the 2020 NFL Draft.
Then Chase decided last month to skip his junior year at LSU this season amid COVID-19 to prepare for the 2021 NFL Draft, where he is expected to be a high first round pick.
Now, Marshall, a junior from Bossier City, will ride alone into Tiger Stadium and the rest of the SEC until the various suspects can develop and join both sides of him at wide receiver for the Tigers. No. 5 LSU opens the season on Sept. 23 at 2:30 p.m. against Mississippi State in Tiger Stadium.
But Marshall always saw himself as a dominant wide receiver before Jefferson and Chase exploded on the scene anyway. Remember, he was the highest ranked player out of high school of the trio.
Marshall was the No. 4 wide receiver in the nation by Rivals.com in 2018 from Parkway High, the No. 1 prospect in Louisiana, and the No. 27 overall prospect in the nation. Chase was No. 4 in the state out of Rummel High in Metairie, the No. 12 receiver in the nation, and the No. 67 overall prospect. Jefferson was not ranked from Destrehan High in 2017.
Asked if he changed his mental approach when Chase recently left, Marshall deadpanned, "For me personally, there wasn't any mental shift. I've always been locked in even before he left. I mean that's just the culture around here. So, I'm ready to take on whatever responsibility I've got to take."
Marshall has every right to think he is better than or as good as Chase and Jefferson. Both of his first two seasons at LSU were hampered by injuries.
"A guy a lot of people don't talk about who's a great player is Terrace Marshall," LSU coach Ed Orgeron said.
Asked if he has been overlooked at LSU, Marshall said, "I could say, yeah, but at the end of the day, I just let my playing do the talking. Once I get to the season, once I do my best, I know it's going to be a good show. I'm not worried about all the politics and all the he said, she said, I just go out there and ball."
The original "Three Amigos" were Denver wide receivers Vance Johnson, Mark Jackson, and Ricky Nattiel in the 1980s in the NFL, a nicknamed coined after a 1986 movie. "The Three Amigos" was a 1986 western comedy starring Chevy Chase, Steve Martin, and Martin Short. But Marshall is not laughing when he explains his approach, which is more akin to the 1952 western classic "High Noon," which starred Gary Cooper and was no comedy.
"I'm not really thinking about who's going to be in front of me," Marshall said when asked about going against all opponents' top cornerbacks now that Jefferson and Chase are gone.
"Once I get in the game, my mindset is to kill whoever is in front of me," he said. "Whoever's in front of me is going to have to handle me."
Marshall, though, does not have the luxury of Burrow at quarterback. He has been replaced by largely inexperienced junior Myles Brennan. Joe Brady, LSU's passing game coordinator last year, is also in the NFL as offensive coordinator at Carolina. He was replaced by NFL veteran Scott Linehan.
"This year's offense is just as fun as last year's offense," Marshall said. "Scott Linehan is a very experienced guy, so he came in and he's been getting us right. We want to show the world what else we can do."