LSU Defense Dominates Mississippi State in Thursday Night Showdown

By Jeff Shull

Last night on national television (with only baseball to compete), the LSU Tigers proved why they are the early favorites to bring home the BCS National Championship trophy, despite being ranked No. 2 or 3—depending on the publication.

While the Oklahoma Sooners are the No. 1 team in the land right now, LSU has faced two tough neutral and road tests so far this season and passed them with flying colors.

In the first game of what ESPN has called “Road Test Weekend,” LSU made a statement.

In their 19-6 win over the Bulldogs, the score really doesn’t do them justice. It was most certainly an offensive struggle, but the way the LSU defense played was nothing short of brilliant.

I remember seeing at one point in the second half, the Tigers had allowed only 16 yards on 16 plays during the half. That’s incredible, especially considering how Mississippi State ran all over Auburn last week.

LSU allowed just 193 total yards, with an impressive 52 yards rushing on 32 carries against them. They had 15 tackles for loss including five sacks. It was an all around thrashing for LSU’s defense.

But what’s even more scary is how much Jarrett Lee developed as a passer before our eyes.

Against a tough Bulldog defense, Lee went 21/27 for 217 yards and one touchdown. He made one mistake with an interception, but Les Miles is going to have a quandary on his hands when incumbent starter Jordan Jefferson returns from suspension.

Lee managed the game the way LSU needed him to, hitting his open receivers and relying on his run game to do most of the work. That’s how the Tigers will win games this year, and maybe Jefferson is not the answer LSU needs right now.

They need to let Lee continue to improve, why fix something that isn’t broke? Clearly LSU’s offense is fine and they are capable of beating great teams with Lee behind center.

No need to make a change, but who knows what Miles is thinking. Last year Jefferson and Lee carried the load together most of the season—whoever was playing better took the snaps—but a championship team needs stability from that position.

From the looks of it, they need to look no further than Lee for that stability.

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