Monday, January 7, 2008

BCS Championship Preview

LSU Tigers (11-2, 6-2) vs Ohio State Buckeyes (11-2, 7-1)

8:00 ET FOX

Line: LSU -3.5, 48

LSU Tigers
Best Win: v Va Tech 48-7
Worst Loss: vs Arkansas 50-48 OT
Record vs BCS Top 25: 4-0
Schedule Strength: 24th
HC Miles Record in Bowls: 3-2

Ohio State Buckeyes
Best Win: @ Michigan 14-3
Worst Loss: v Illinois 28-21
Record vs BCS Top 25: 1-2
Schedule Strength: T-48th
HC Tressel Record in Bowls: 4-2

For Ohio State to Win:

The Buckeyes will need to take car of the ball against an LSU
team that is +18 in turnover margin this year. Ohio State
needs to give the ball to Chris Wells as much as possible to
control the ball and keep it out of the more explosive
offense’s hands.

Defensively, the Buckeyes should blitz Flynn and Perrilloux
and try force them into quick decisions. Ohio State has 42
sacks on the year and the LSU o-line has given up 29. The
caveat is that both LSU QBs are good scramblers.

For LSU to Win:
The Tigers need to spread the ball on offense. This means two
things: literally spreading the field with formations and
allowing their receivers and back to run in space and to
spread the ball around to all of their playmakers. LSU needs
to keep a balance between Flynn and Perrilloux to allow both
of them to run and pass because they are both capable of it.

Defensively, LSU should try and make Ohio State play
left-handed. The Buckeyes are much better at running than
passing and LSU has allowed just one 100 yard rusher this
year. Stack the line and make QB Todd Boeckman and receivers
Hartline and Robiskie beat your D-line and DBs.

LSU has not been healthy since early October… Can they regain
that early season form?

I don’t think so. It is hard to
regain that kind of chemistry this late in the year.

How does the coaching transition of Bo Pellini affect LSU?
This is a big distraction for LSU and has shown not to work in
past national title games.

How does the crowd affect Ohio State?
This will be the closest thing to home game for LSU outside of Baton Rouge.
The crowd gave LSU a 6.5 dog to Oklahoma a few years back a
big advantage. LSU made big plays in that game to increase
that advantage so Ohio State cannot allow those, especially

Does the 50+ day layoff effect Ohio State like last year?
Not as much. Tressel changed his approach this year including arriving at the site later. The Buckeyes learned what not to do last year.

Everyone started out picking LSU in this game because of the
SEC’s speed advantage. As we get closer to the game, some
analysts are coming back to the Buckeyes with motivation as
the key factor. I think the motivation of being disrespected
goes out the window the first time you get clock cleaned and
it comes down to talent and preparation. LSU has the talent
advantage, but Ohio State has a big preparation edge. I
really think Pellini’s imminent departure will have a big
effect on the LSU defense. I like Ohio State in the upset
that is much higher scoring than people predict.
Ohio State 31 LSU 28

Ohio State Wins, Covers, Over

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