Looking back, it’s easy to see why Joe Burrow’s 2019 season with the LSU Tigers is one of the greatest seasons -if not the greatest season- by a quarterback in NCAA history.

The dude was unstoppable that year. As well as unflappable. And the results showed. Burrow broke multiple NCAA records en route to a national championship and Heisman Trophy, a feat that few collegiate signal-callers have accomplished.

Not many people saw the meteoric rise of the Bengals‘ star QB coming. Well, at least those outside the program.

But for those inside the LSU football program, they saw a guy who was about to change the landscape of LSU football.

And one of those people is/was LSU legend Kevin Faulk.

Faulk was recently interviewed during the Reeses’ Senior Bowl Hall of Fame introduction ceremony and explained how he and the rest of the LSU staff noticed that things were about to be very different with Burrow directing the offense.

“The first spring he was there, he was OK,” explained Faulk. “But that second spring, we’re going through spring practice and I’m not even a coach yet -I’m just a director of player development- and I’m watching practice and I’m like, ‘This is not LSU football. This is a little different. OK, let me see what happens during summer time.’

“We get back to camp and I’m like, ‘Uh oh. This is a whole new different LSU football team, boys.”

Burrow’s arrival couldn’t have been time any better. College football isn’t just defense and three-yards-and-a-cloud-of-dust mentality, anymore. That was LSU’s formula for as long as most can remember and the Tigers hadn’t seen the type of quarterback play Burrow provided since the Jamarcus Russel days of 2004-2006.

Just put it this way: Burrow’s 76 passing touchdowns as a Tiger were more than the previous three starting quarterbacks who played before him from 2014-2017.

Regardless, Burrow’s abilities as a passer vaulted the Tigers offense into the NCAA’s top echelon and his elite play was the catalyst behind the championship season.

If the Tigers stayed true to their identity of smash mouth football, who knows what the 2019 season would’ve entailed. Burrow allowed them to make that change, thus changing the identity of LSU football.

And now, he’s changing the identity of the Bengals into one of the NFL’s best teams.

Featured image via Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer / USA TODAY NETWORK