Welcome everyone to the latest edition of #4Downs where I break down what went right and what went wrong for the LSU Tigers! This week, I look at the Tigers 24-17 win over Arkansas.
1st Down: Offense Finds Its Groove
After getting shut out last weekend by Alabama inside the friendly confines of Tiger Stadium, you can only go up from there right? LSU’s offense found it’s groove once again on Saturday with 359 total yards and the yardage being split fairly evenly between Joe Burrow and the stable of running backs.
It wasn’t quite as high scoring as some thought it would be, but considering that Burrow hadn’t thrown a touchdown pass since the Ole Miss game it’s a step in the right direction.
2nd Down: Defense Brings Pressure
The defense needed a confidence boost as well and we saw that pay off in a big way, especially when it came to bringing pressure to Trevor Storey. We saw Grant Delpit do Grant Delpit things with a pair of pass breakups and a sack along with six tackles.
You also saw Kary Vincent and Glen Logan get after the freshman and that was a step up after having a hard time getting within arms reach of Tua Tagovialoa last weekend. It wasn’t an absolute thrashing, but the Tigers didn’t have to do much with how poor the Razorbacks played on Saturday, it felt like they couldn’t get out of their own way at times.
3rd Down: Great Third Down Defense
It’s always impressive to see the Tigers defense come up huge on third down. The best part about the fact that they allowed only two successful third down conversions? Every one of Arkansas’ third down attempts was from at least five yards out. In fact there were some from as far as 15 yards away from the marker.
It’s amazing that the Tigers were able to hold off the Razorbacks the way that they did. We all expected this to be a rebuilding year for Arkansas with first year head coach Chad Morris working with some of the leftovers of the Bielema era and it might not be a penciled in win for LSU in the near future.
4th Down: Justin Jefferson Explodes
Getting back to the offensive side of the ball, the Tigers were helped a lot by Justin Jefferson. He’s been one of the best wide receivers on the program all season long and he proved that once again on Saturday.
The sophomore racked up six receptions on seven targets for 117 yards, including a 40-yard touchdown pass to give LSU the early lead. Having someone like Jefferson is huge when it comes to this offense finding that spark and more importantly, putting points on the board. Again, Burrow hadn’t thrown a touchdown since September 29th and Jefferson’s ability as a wideout was a big reason why that touchdown even happened.
Extra Point: Score Doesn’t Show How Dominant LSU Was
I’m sure a lot of degenerate gamblers were upset that LSU didn’t cover the two-touchdown spread on Saturday, but the final score doesn’t show how strong of a performance it was for LSU. It’s been harped on for the last several years that when the Tigers lose to Alabama, it’s felt like this team packed it in and was comfortable with getting a middle of the road bowl game.
With Ed Orgeron at the helm, he’s got this team motivated to do better and reach for a bigger goal and the goal he has for this team is 10-2 and it’s very much in reach after next week’s game against a really bad Rice team and a tough ballgame against a Texas A&M team we can’t really put our finger on, but have to mark it as a win for the Tigers based on past performances. Look at the stats and it’ll show you a lot about how this team isn’t walking around defeated, in fact they’re playing their tail ends off to prove that they’re better than what some of the pundits thought they were at the beginning of the year.