BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The LSU Tigers will face the New Mexico State Aggies at 6:30 p.m. Here are some of the things to look for in the matchup.
1. Dead Valley - LSU's Tiger Stadium has enjoyed many magical settings and boisterous crowds over the years. This will not be one of them. The Tigers' mostly woeful effort last Saturday against Mississippi State, combined with this week's unspectacular opponent in New Mexico State, will have the place pretty dead. On a positive note, many folks will probably be attending their first ever LSU football game tonight. That's because many of the usuals are dumping their tickets, likely saying "Give them to someone who's never been." Time to take the local Boy Scouts and church youth groups to Tiger Stadium! Goose bump moments tonight, though? I highly doubt it.
2. Getting ready for Auburn - Many critics say LSU's game plan against UL-Monroe earlier this year did nothing to get the Tigers ready for their SEC opener against Mississippi State. Well, here we are again. LSU is a 43-point favorite to pound the Aggies this week, with a very scary trip to Jordan-Hare Stadium and Auburn looming next weekend. Poor New Mexico State is allowing nearly 300 yards per game rushing this year and their head coach, Doug Martin, tells us he'll start six true freshmen on the defensive side of the ball against LSU. The Tigers can line up in that I-formation and likely pound away with great success. But, what good will that do the Tigers in the long run? This is an LSU team that needs to step out of its comfort zone and work on some new things. After tonight, there are no more layups for LSU. And, if the Tigers don't fix some things, it could be a long year.
3. Brandon Harris snap count - Head coach Les Miles said sophomore Anthony Jennings will start again at quarterback. As I wrote earlier this week, Jennings had a real rough night against Mississippi State last Saturday, but he also got little help. There were drops, a questionable game plan and an offensive line that couldn't get the run going and did a poor job protecting Jennings. He was pounded most of the night. True freshman Brandon Harris made big things happen in a very short period of time, when he was finally inserted. Harris can really fire the football. How much does he play tonight? Does the Shreveport native make another big move to pass Jennings this week? In the end, who starts each week isn't really that important, but who gets the most reps is.