LSU 19 - State 6
STARKVILLE, Miss. --
LSU's suffocating defense allowed only 193 yards and had 15 tackles for
loss, while Drew Alleman kicked four field goals to give the No.
3-ranked Tigers a 19-6 victory over Mississippi State on Thursday night.
LSU (3-0, 1-0 SEC) beat Mississippi State (1-2, 0-2 SEC) for the 12th-straight time and the 19th in the past 20 meetings.
outgained Mississippi State, 361-193. Despite committing nine penalties
for 83 yards, the Tigers managed to hold the ball for nearly 38 minutes.
quarterback Jarrett Lee was nearly flawless, completing 21-of-27 passes
for 213 yards including a 19-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver
Rueben Randle with 12 minutes to play in the game. In the fourth
quarter, Lee was intercepted for the first time in 131 pass attempts
when Randle broke off a route along the right sideline.
running back Spencer Ware carried the load offensively, gaining 107
yards on 22 carries. Michael Ford took 13 carries for 50 yards. LSU
totaled 148 yards rushing on 38 tries.
Randle led the Tigers
receiving corps with 98 yards on six catches. Freshman wide receiver
Odell Beckham Jr. had a game-high eight catches for 61 yards.
Tigers defense was stellar and dominant. Before the game's final drive
when the game was in hand, LSU did not allow a single yard in the
Morris Claiborne had two interceptions, while
fellow corner Tyrann Mathieu led the team with 10 tackles. LSU had 15
tackles behind the line of scrimmage for minus-60 yards including four
sacks for 25 yards. Defensive tackles Bennie Logan and Michael Brockers
combined for 6.5 tackles for loss, and tackle Anthony Johnson and end
Kendrick Adams added two each. Adams also had a fumble recovery.
the first quarter, Mississippi State's Chris Relf had little success
against the Tigers defense. Once LSU found its bearings against the
6-foot-4, 225-pound quarterback, Relf finished 11-of-17 passing for 96
yards and was relieved by Tyler Russell in the fourth quarter. Russell
was 4-of-8 for 45 yards and an interception.
Relf also carried a
team-high 16 times for 10 net yards. He was sacked three times. Running
back Vick Ballard led Mississippi State with 38 yards on 10 carries, as
the Bulldogs finished with 52 net yards on 34 attempts.
the toss and deferred its decision until the second half, and
Mississippi State took possession to start the game. A short kickoff by
Alleman and a 25-yard return by Jameon Lewis gave the Bulldogs good
field position at their 36. However, a 6-yard sack by Adams and a false
start halted the Bulldogs drive.
A 47-yard punt by Baker Swedenberg and a minus-5 yard return by Mathieu pushed the Tigers back to the 19 where they took over.
began its longest drive of the season in terms of plays and yards, but
wasn't able to cross the goal line. Ward did the bulk of the work in
the Tigers' backfield-oriented attack during the drive, running seven
times for 29 yards including a 10-yard scamper to setup first-and-goal
at the 7. Three plays netted only three yards before Alleman gave LSU a
3-0 lead with a 21-yard field goal at the 5:42 mark of the first
Mississippi State countered with a much more up-tempo
attack, giving Relf seven carries from under center and helping the
Bulldogs to a goal-to-go situation at the LSU 9. In tight quarters,
three Relf runs went for no gain. Derek DePasquale countered LSU's
field goal with a 26-yarder to tie the game at 3-3 with four seconds
remaining in the opening quarter.
On the ensuing drive, Lee
connected with Beckham Jr. for a 13-yard gain for a first down and an
8-yard gain across midfield. Lee's third-down completion to wideout
Kadron Boone came up four yards short of the marker, and LSU brought on
DJ Howard. His 35-yard punt was fair caught at the MSU 8, where Relf
started another long drive.
During a 13-play, 54-yard drive, the
Bulldogs converted two third downs and a second-and-18, and entered LSU
territory. Again, LSU's defense stepped up to the challenge and forced
Swedenberg's punt was downed at the 5, where Lee wasted
no time going after the lone cover cornerback in MSU's stacked
defensive formation. The LSU quarterback found Randle for a 31-yard
gain to get the Tigers out of the shadow of the endzone. Lee continued
to pass to advance into Mississippi State territory. A 9-yard
connection with Randle and an 11-yard pass to wide receiver James
Wright setup a first down at the MSU 31. The drive stalled when Lee's
pass to Ware fell incomplete, and Alleman came in for a 42-yard field
goal that was true.
LSU took a 6-3 lead into the lockerroom after outgaining the Bulldogs, 174-117. Lee was 13-of-15 for 128 yards in the half.
caught up with LSU in the third quarter, as the Tigers were forced to
start the next drive at their 10-yard line. With Ware running, the
Tigers gained a first down to the LSU 22. An incomplete pass to Randle
forced another punt by Howard, who managed only 32 yards to the MSU 40.
the next play, Relf went deep for the first time in the game -- and LSU
made him pay. Claiborne leaped high over the back of 6-foot-1 wide
receiver Michael Carr to grab the overthrown ball at the LSU 22.
penalties sent the Tigers backward and close to their goal line. Howard
was able to get off a 41-yard punt from the endzone to get the Tigers
out of trouble.
The Bulldogs were able to take advantage of the
short field this time, overcoming a third-and-10 with a 11-yard
completion and a personal foul for a late hit. Offsides on LSU setup a
first-and-5 at the LSU 19, but Relf couldn't find an open receiver and
was sacked by Johnson. The Bulldogs couldn't overcome the freshman's
effort and settled for a second field goal.
The 42-yard attempt was successful to tie the game at 6-6 with 5:26 left in the third quarter.
quickly answered the score with Alleman's third field goal of the
contest. A personal foul on the Bulldogs gave the Tigers a first down
at the LSU 45. Lee then found Beckham Jr. and Randle to for gains of 6
and 10 yards, setting up runs of 11 and 6 yards by Ford. The drive was
stopped when Ware was stuffed in the backfield and Lee's pass to Randle
was dropped over the middle. Alleman continued to perform valiantly,
making a 41-yard field goal to give LSU a 9-6 lead with 1:46 left in
the third quarter.
The fourth quarter is when the LSU defense
began to assert itself, and the Tigers offense started to dominate a
worn-down Bulldogs line.
Lee opened the quarter with a 20-yard
pass to Randle to the Tigers 44. Then, Beckham Jr. caught
three-straight passes of 8, 5 and 11 yards to the LSU 43, where Ware
ran for a first down to the Bulldogs 19. Lee capped his efficient game
with a perfectly thrown pass to Randle in the right corner of the
endzone for the game's only touchdown.
The Tigers led 16-6 with 11:56 left in the game.
Relf under center, the Bulldogs again went nowhere and quickly punted.
But two plays later, the Bulldogs got new life -- if only for a few
moments. From his 31, Lee looked deep along the right sideline for
Randle again, but the wide receiver broke off the route and Lee was
intercepted by cornerback Johnthan Banks.
With backup Russell
replacing Relf under center, Mississippi State again gained nothing
against the Tigers front line, moving backward five yards before
Electing to keep the ball out of the air, LSU advanced
to the Bulldogs 44 after a 23-yard run by Ware. In Bulldogs territory,
LSU was willing to punt rather than take a chance on third down. The
Tigers burned nearly four minutes on the drive.
On first down at
the MSU 20, Russell was sacked by linebacker Ryan Baker and Logan. On
second-and-20, Russell again took pressure from his left by Baker and
his pass in the direction of Perkins was intercepted by Claiborne at
the MSU 19 to put the game on ice.
The Tigers burned two more
minutes off the clock before Alleman connected on a 29-yard field goal
to give LSU its final margin, 19-6.
With Russell at quarterback, Mississippi State was able to advance 59 yards before running out of time at the LSU 19.
The announced crowd was 56,924, the third-largest in Davis-Wade Stadium history.