Tigers face Air Raid Bulldogs with lingering questions on defense

Geaux Nation

BATON ROUGE, La. – “I can’t tell you that I’ve seen anything that gives me confidence it won’t be like last year,” LSU head coach Ed Orgeron said.

The Tigers will face Mike Leach and Mississippi State’s air raid offense for the second consecutive season. Last year, former Bulldogs quarterback K.J. Costello torched LSU’s defense and set an SEC single game record with 623 passing yards.

The season opening loss set the tone for what became the worst defense in school history. The Bayou Bengals allowed 492 yards per game, ranking 124th out of 127 schools in the country. In 2021, LSU has allowed 298.7 YPG, but breaking down the game-by-game stats would raise a cause for concern.

LSU held McNeese to 305 total offensive yards, and the Purple and Gold did even better against Central Michigan: Clamping the Chippewas to 284 total yards.

The elephant in the room has been the season opener at UCLA. The Tigers allowed 470 yards, and the loss became the team’s benchmark for improvement.

“We have different defenses, but we didn’t answer the first challenge. The first challenge against UCLA, we didn’t play very good; and we’ve gotten a little bit better; but there’s a lot of things that we have to continue to fix; and we are going to be challenged this Saturday,” Orgeron said.

Mississippi State averaged 406.7 yards through its first three games.

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