BATON ROUGE, La. – LSU survived and thrived in a thrilling road win over a fellow Top 10 opponent last week at Texas and avoiding a big letdown is next on the agenda. The fifth-ranked Tigers will try to keep up the intensity when they return home to host FCS foe Northwestern State on Saturday.
TV: 7:30 p.m. ET, SEC Network. LINE: LSU -51.
LSU installed a new offense during camp and showed it off last week while putting up 573 total yards in the 45-38 triumph over the Longhorns. Quarterback Joe Burrow is running the spread offense with a deft hand and thrust himself into the early Heisman Trophy conversation by completing 31-of-39 passes for 471 yards and four touchdowns at Texas. "I always kind of knew it," Burrow told the school's athletic website of his place among the best in college football. "I think everybody's starting to see it a little bit. People that have been around me and myself kind of always felt that way." Burrow figures to see at least a few series of action against the Demons, who began the season by falling to Tennessee-Martin and Midwestern State by a combined score of 75-27.
ABOUT NORTHWESTERN STATE (0-2)
The Demons have not finished with a winning record since going 7-5 in 2008 and are struggling to turn the program around after a pair of lopsided losses to begin the 2019 campaign. "We're 0-2, so we're hearing a lot of outside noise," head coach Brad Laird told reporters. "We have to focus internally on us, becoming the football team we can be - that we have shown. It will take each and every one of us putting in hard work throughout the week to be ready for Saturday night. It's that way each week, but more so now. The focus has to be on us and the things we can do to get better." The bright spot early is the play of quarterback Shelton Eppler, who threw for 564 yards and three TDs in the first two games.
ABOUT LSU (2-0)
Burrow is blessed with plenty of talent around him and 15 different receivers recorded at least one reception in the first two weeks. Justin Jefferson (14 catches, 250 yards, four TDs) leads the way while Ja'Marr Chase (10, 168, one) and Terrace Marshall Jr. (10, 154, four) round out the starting trio of receivers. "Every one of those guys could be a No. 1 receiver for any team in the country," center Lloyd Cushenberry told the school's athletic website. "They're the best group in the country."
1. LSU coach Ed Orgeron was a four-year starter at defensive line for Northwestern State, graduating in 1983.
2. LSU owns an 11-0 lead in the series, most recently posting a 49-3 victory in 2011.
3. The Tigers (799) need one win to become the 12th FBS program to reach 800.
PREDICTION: LSU 62, Northwestern State 3