Brian Kelly has denied saying LSU would ‘beat the heck out of Florida State’ in the run-up to the Tigers’ top-10 matchup with the Noles in Week 1.

Kelly told The Lafayette Daily Advertiser’s Koki Riley that the comments were “not something he would ever say.”

Here’s his full quote:

“I think you all know me. I’m pretty careful with what I say and how I said it. Never have I been cavalier or disrespectful to an opponent in my 33 years,” Kelly said on Tuesday. “So if somebody wants to prop up a comment and inflate it into something that it is not, that’s what social media is about today.”

“I have nothing but the utmost respect for coach (Mike) Norvell. I know who the opponent was. It’s just not in my background or nature to make those kinds of comments.”

However, there’s audio of Kelly making the remark he seems to be distancing himself from. Kelly made the statement while on his radio show last Thursday.

Kelly was discussing the relative inexperience of LSU’s roster but wanted to be clear he wasn’t trying to make any excuses before the game. Here’s his original quote with context:

“We’re going to take 15 freshmen on this trip. And 14 transfers. So nearly 40% of this travel roster are going to go over night for the first time with LSU. And that’s not a disclaimer of any kind, we’re gonna go beat the heck out of Florida State.”

Here’s audio of Kelly’s remarks:

Florida State defeated LSU 45-24 on Sunday night in Orlando.

LSU will face Grambling State at home on Saturday.

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