The Tigers have their season opener tonight against the Cowboys of McNeese in Tiger Stadium. Both teams enter the contest 0-1, after LSU suffered a heartbreaking defeat to UCLA in the Rose Bowl 38-27. The Cowboys lost at home to West Florida 42-36.
LSU currently has a 1-0 all-time series lead with McNeese, when the Tigers beat the Cowboys 32-10 back in 2010. The two teams also matched up again in 2015, for the Tigers home opener, however due to severe lightning in the first quarter the game was declared a no contest.
The Tigers won the toss and deferred to the second half. McNeese gets the ball to start the game tonight. The Cowboys managed six yards and a quick three and out.
The Tigers start their drive at their own 38, they would drive the length of the field and go for it twice on fourth down. The second time a fourth and short from the 19 that ended with a Trey Palmer receiving touchdown from Max Johnson.
The Tigers would get the ball back after another three and out by McNeese. They would try to convert another fourth down try, but this time would be unsuccessful. Giving the ball back to McNeese.
The Tiger defense held stout and forced the Cowboys into another punting situation. LSU was forced into a three and out as well.
Defensive lineman Jaquelin Roy forced a fumble midway through the second quarter, and was able to recover it setting up the Tiger’s second touchdown. This one, a three yard pass to receiver Kayshon Boutte. The play was reviewed by officials and confirmed on replay.
Boutte would have a pair of receiving touchdowns by the end of the night.
Cade York has a record night.
Tiger’s kicker Cade York set not one, but two records tonight. First kicking a 55 yard field goal with less than two minutes left in the first half a Tiger Stadium record. He followed it up in the fourth quarter by breaking his own record by kicking a 56 yard field.
LSU continues to struggle on the offensive line.
The Tigers started three new offensive linemen this week due to injuries. Xavier Hill, Marlon Martinez, and Charles Turner. While Turner and Martinez have both seen playing time already, Hill is still a redshirt freshman. The newcomer to the bunch and may have not had time to gel with this unit. You could see early that the line was struggling to open up holes for the running backs. This did improve as the game went on. The variation in the run game helped open up holes as well. “We had several offensive linemen out.” said Tigers Head Coach Ed Orgeron. “But we had a variety of runs. Speeds, sweeps, tosses, counters.” The protection does need to get better for quarterback Max Johnson. “It’s not good enough.” said Orgeron. “It starts with protection first. We have to protect the quarterback and we have to get better.”
Nussmeier is in the building
Quarterback Garrett Nussmeier debuted tonight and did not disappoint. The freshman tried to extend plays with his legs and saw the field at the second and third levels. He threw his receivers to open spots on the field, unfortunately they weren’t always able to hold onto to the ball. Or the ball was just a bit out of reach. With practice comes timing and tendencies. In the next year or two it will be In Nuss We Trust.
The future of RBU is bright
Young running backs Armoni Goodwin and Corey Kiner provided a much needed spark to the LSU backfield. Goodwin broke off a 21 yard carry on his first carry in Death Valley, while not to be outdone Kiner plowed his way in for a 23 yard rushing touchdown. Ty Davis-Price was also able to get back in the mix with a long carry of 21 his self.
Sacks, sacks, and sacks.
Tonight the Tigers registered eight sacks and 16 TFLs. McNeese Quarterback Cody Orgeron was flustered all night. He had a total of negative 60 yards rushing for the game. These are freakish NCAA 14 video game stats. Maason Smith delivered a hat trick performance tonight, turning in three sacks on his own. Defensive end Andre Anthony had two and a half sacks, Desmond Little and BJ Ojulari both had one of their own. Defensive back Cam Lewis registered half a sack on the night as well. “Very pleased with our pass rush.” said Orgeron. “I knew we were a good pass rushing team but obviously, we’re going to face stiffer opponents down the road.”
The defensive performance between tonight and last week seem to be night and day. Damone Clark still lead the team in tackles this week, however, unlike last week, this week the communication between players seemed to flow much quicker.
Final Score LSU 34 – McNeese 7