By: Tony Thomas
September 8, 2019
#6 LSU rode into Austin for a Top Ten showdown with #9 Texas on Saturday night. The hype had been built up all week. Celebrities lined the Texas sideline, including PGA golfer Jordan Speith and Academy Award-winning actor Matthew McConaughey.
They and the Longhorn faithful would all be disappointed as the Tigers rode off into the Texas night with a 45-38 win.
QB Joe Burrow was methodical, throwing for 471 yards and 3 touchdowns with one interception. WR’s Justin Jefferson, Jamar Chase, and Terrence Marshall each had over 100 yards receiving in the game. Burrow’s performance was the 2nd most passing yards in school history for a single game.
A game-time temperature of 100 degrees and injuries took a toll on the Tigers. LB Michael Divinity left the game because of cramping and had to get an IV. Others left the game due to injury. Rashard Lawrence left with an apparent knee injury and K’lavon Chaisson appeared to re-aggravate an ankle injury he suffered in fall camp.
A key moment in the first half and one that was a difference-maker occurred when Texas running back Keontay Ingram dropped a wide-open touchdown pass in the endzone. LSU stopped Texas on 2 goal-to-goal possessions with no points and turnover on downs to set the tone for the rest of the game. LSU began to pull away and took a 20-7 lead into the locker room at halftime.
LSU brought pressure all night and sacked Texas QB Sam Ehlinger 4 times. But the LSU defense at times missed too many tackles and the secondary was playing soft coverage on the Texas receivers, allowing the Longhorns to gain big yardage on 2nd down and long and 3rd down and long to make it a close game down the stretch.
The Longhorns scored a late touchdown in the waning moments of the game to pull within 7 points, then lined up for an onside kick. The ball was kicked and a Texas player appeared to recover the ball, but could not hold on and the ball went out of bounds. LSU was awarded possession of the ball. LSU snapped it once and the clock ran out.
If LSU has yet to silence the critics of the run-heavy offensive philosophy favored during the Les Miles years, consider this: in the first 2 games this season, LSU has gained over 1000 yards of total offense and is averaging 50 points per game. The Tigers have the #5 ranked passing offense in the country, averaging 410 yards per game. LSU ranks #20 in Total Offense at 522 yards per game. When was the last time LSU had a Top 5 passing offense and averaged over 500 yards per game?
LSU is for real.
Next Game for LSU: 9/14 vs Northwestern La. State
Next Game for Texas: 9/14 at Rice
Thanks for reading.