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Opponent Q&A - LSU, Pt. II

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Okay, we talk football now.

NCAA Football: Louisiana State at Mississippi State Matt Bush-USA TODAY Sports

Each week it seems like Auburn gets to play in the biggest game of the day, against the best team they will have faced to that point, in the most hostile environment they will have visited. This Saturday, all of those things are true again.

What makes this LSU team so great, and how has their offense been able to take off to incredible new levels? Our boys over at And The Valley Shook help us understand the Great Corndog Offensive Mystery of 2019.

Everything is focused on LSU’s offense this year. There’s no hotter assistant than Joe Brady, so what happens when he inevitably leaves? Will Coach O be able to keep up this offensive output with someone else running the show?

First of all: how dare you, Joe Brady is going to DIE as the LSU passing game coordinator. But I’ll entertain this hypothetical “Joe Brady leaving” hogwash. I think Coach O will. It wasn’t lip service in his introductory press conference when he said he wanted to run an uptempo, spread offense. He got Matt Canada. Granted, that didn’t work out but he went out and tried it. He *had* Lane Kiffin until some Nick Saban and Jimmy Sexton shenanigans got in the way of that. I think what O is realizing is that the best head coaches are the ones who can identify talent, be it players or coaches, and tailor the program to their strengths and not make their strengths fit the mold of the program.

If you could take any offensive player for LSU from this millennium and put him in this offense, who would it be? Steer clear from OBJ or Fournette if you can.

I’d go with Trai Turner. I’m really concerned by the Auburn defensive line potentially exposing the offensive line. And the reason I’d pick Turner, a guard, over a La’el Collins, a tackle, is I’m worried the Auburn pass rush will come from the interior instead of on the edge.

One of our writers thinks that LSU is the best team in the country. Do you agree? Why or why not?

I’m starting to believe that they are. The defense is rounding into form, especially last week when Grant Delpit got to do what he does best and play downhill and attack the line of scrimmage. The offensive line still gives me pause but with Ed Ingram back in the fold, the unit is better which leads to more holes for the running backs and a cleaner pocket for Burrow. Is LSU the best team in the country? I’m starting to think so. Can they beat Alabama in Alabama? That I’m not sure of. And unfortunately, for LSU that may be what defines the season.

You’re in charge of game planning against LSU. How do you attack on both sides of the ball?

If I’m concerned about the Tiger defensive line, which I am!, I’m countering by having Burrow get the ball out quick to his outstanding trio of wide outs Jamar Chase, Justin Jefferson and Terrace Marshall. I don’t care how good Derrick Brown is (he’s very good!), he’s not getting to Burrow in two seconds.

Defensively, I’d mimic something similar to what they ran against Miss State last week. Keep Delpit close to the line and let him go after Bo Nix. I don’t know if LSU has the best secondary in the country, but I’d trust Derrick Stingley and Kristian Fulton over any corner tandem in the country. I’d trust them to blanket any receiver Auburn has and let Delpit and Jacoby Stevens be the queen of the chessboard and attack in any and every direction.

What scares you about Auburn?

I’ve mentioned it several times but that Auburn defensive line makes me truly afraid. Now, Florida’s line gave me pause going into that game and the Tiger offensive line played beautifully. But Auburn’s group is better than Florida’s and I’m not sure the line can keep Burrow upright nor give the running backs holes to run through.

What’s your prediction for this game?

All things being said, I still think LSU wins. I feel better about the game being in Baton Rouge than on the Plains. I’m expecting Auburn to slow down Burrow and company...a bit. But not quite enough. I trust the LSU defense, especially at home, to not get beat by a true freshman quarterback. If Auburn wants to make this game a shootout, by all means go ahead. I don’t think they can keep up with LSU. When has anyone ever been able to say that?

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We’re two days away from the next “biggest game of the year” in the SEC. War Eagle!