Friday, September 19, 2008
LSU-Auburn Match Strong Defenses and Shaky QB Play
LSU @ Auburn
Line: LSU -2.5, 37.5
This game has gone a long way to deciding the SEC West in recent years and the home team has won the last eight games between these two. Auburn is still struggling to implement its spread offense as evidenced last week against Miss. St.. LSU has played two patsies thus far, so this will be their first big test.
Keys to the Game:
1. Quarterback Play
LSU is a 'Ryan Perrilloux' away from being right up there with the USC’s and Oklahoma’s of the college football world, but Andrew Hatch is now their guy after Mr. Perrilloux was dismissed in the off season. Hatch has not had to do a whole lot except hand off to Charles Scott and watch his defense dominate thus far. Meanwhile, Auburn’s Chris Todd has struggled to move the ball in Tony Franklin’s spread offense. Kodi Burns looked a lot better last year in the Chick Fil A Bowl. Not trying to start a QB controversy. Just saying…
2. Run Defense
Both teams are averaging over 200 ypg on the ground from their offense. Both teams are holding their opponents to under 60 ypg rushing. Auburn has done their work against better competition than LSU thus far. However, I like LSU's offensive line more than Auburn's because of LSU's experience here. It will be interesting to see which defense blinks first here.
3. 4th Quarter Big Play
This game has come down to the wire in recent memory and a big (and sometimes controversial) play has been the deciding factor. Whether it be a last second pass, or a tipped ball/non pass interference call, I do not think this year will be any different. Which player is going to step up this year? It probably be someone the casual SEC fan has not heard of.
This game is going to close. I do not put a lot of stock in how bad Auburn looked last week because I think they will bounce back and play much better at home this week. They are too good to play that bad two weeks in a row. LSU has more "knowns" right now than Auburn and like I said in my Florida/Tennessee preview I have to go with the "known" in big games. LSU wins, but it is an absolute nail biter.
LSU 17 Auburn 16
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