gtpdd Game Preview: Louisiana State University and A&M

Tomorrow night at 6:00 PM Central, the Bulldogs take on the LSU Tigers in Baton Rouge. But before you watch the game, you need to know a few things. That’s where we come in!

How to Watch

Tomorrow night’s game will air on ESPNU, which is that one annoying ESPN that doesn’t seem to come with most basic cable packages. So find yourself a good stream, cozy up to the laptop, and get ready to yell a lot about home cookin’ and bayou bias.

Other People’s Predictions

  • ESPN FPI: LSU has a 91% chance to win.
  • Massey: LSU wins, 35-7
  • Vegas (OddsShark): LSU will win by 21 points.
  • BleedTechBlue: LSU wins, 38-17
  • S&P+: LSU wins, 38-20
  • Brooks Kubena, The Advocate: LSU wins, 41-10

Previous Record

It’s a battle of the unbeatens! LSU comes in at 3-0, having defeated a Hurricane, some Lions, and Tigers (almost the Oh My! trifecta). Tech comes in at 2-0 and well-rested after fending off two packs of Jaguars. LSU leads the all-time series 18-1, with Tech’s last victory coming in 1904 (but LSU and Tech didn’t play for over 60 years between 1941 and 2003).

What to Watch For

The key matchup for Tech tomorrow night is how the Bulldogs linebacking corps stacks up against LSU’s running game. With former third-string Ohio State Quarterback Joe Burrow at the helm, the Tigers have relied heavily on their running backs so far in 2018. Burrow has attempted 78 passes, while the team has opted to run on nearly 60% of its plays. That’s worked well for LSU, as they come into tomorrow at 3-0 and at #6 in the nation in what was supposed to be a tough year. RB Nick Brossette has learned a few things from sitting behind current NFL stars Leonard Fournette and Derrius Guice (unrelated to our fearless leader Pres. Guice). He’s averaging just over 5.5 yards per carry through three weeks, and the statistician department here at gtpdd tells me that’s pretty good.

The good news for Tech fans is that the Bulldog linebacking corps has been relatively solid so far this year. The defense as a whole is allowing 143.5 rushing yards per game, which is good for 61st in the NCAA. If linebackers Collin Scott and Dae’Von Washington have anything to say about it, LSU will have a bit of a tougher time against the Dogs than they may think. Washington is coming off of team-leading 71 tackles in 2017, and currently sits at second on the team with 14 so far in 2018. Collin Scott is making the most of his first year as a starter with 12 tackles through two games. I’m looking forward to seeing how the Bulldog linebackers stack up in the running game tomorrow night, primarily because I think if Tech is going to win, they’ll have to force Joe Burrow to be the focus of LSU’s offense.

Random Factoid

The last time Tech played a team ranked sixth, it didn’t go too well for the Dogs. Way back in 2004, Tech got manhandled by #6 Auburn, 52-7. That Tech team was led by future NFL players RB Ryan Moats, who rushed for over 1700 yards, and CB Tramon Williams. Just prior to taking on Auburn that day, Tech had beaten #17 Fresno State in California amidst a run of four straight ranked opponents. Against Fresno, Moats ran for 236 yards and four touchdowns. Williams had a second half interception that helped the Bulldogs come back to win. There was no such luck against the #6 Tigers the next weekend. Moats, at the time the nation’s second leading rusher, sprained his ankle in the first quarter and sat out the rest of the game. Tramon Williams didn’t have a game-changing interception. Here’s hoping that this week’s matchup against the #6 Tigers goes better than the last one!

Hot Taeks

Evan: J’Mar will have double the passing yards of Joe Burrow tomorrow night.

Daniel A: Tech doesn’t lose a road SEC game that I am attending in heartbreaking fashion. They will either be blown out or win.

Nathan: I want to say Tech will win, but that’s not even a hot take. That’s just a fact.

Matt: I had a premonition. LaTech will beat LSU 6-0 on Saturday, creating a wormhole that opens back to 1904.

Josh: LSU will look like doo doo in the first half.

Daniel S: Tech storms out of the gate in the first half and picks up a decent lead.

Final Predictions

Evan: I think Tech is much better than Vegas believes. ESPN’s FPI thinks that Tech has about a 1 in 10 chance of winning, which I think seems about right. Tech can beat LSU in Baton Rouge tomorrow night. As I lay out in my Three Keys post over at BleedTechBlue.com, I think there is a real chance that Tech could come up with a winning recipe for beating the Tigers. Despite this, what I’ve seen from Tech thus far in 2018 isn’t inspiring enough for me to pick the Dogs. The offense isn’t as potent as it was in years past. The defense hasn’t been as suffocating against inferior opponents as I hoped it would be. My heart says yes, but my mind says it’s another 8 point loss. Hell, I’ll even say we lead at halftime again, putting a certain amount of fear into Ed O’s halftime interview grumbles.

LSU wins, 26-18

Daniel A: At least one drunk person is mean to me and my family and I suffer severe hearing damage. Also, it’s no fun to predict your team to lose so I am not going to do that even though that’s the most likely outcome.

Tech wins, 27-24

Nathan: Both teams will want to play with a slow pace game, so this will be a low scoring game. Tech scores first and leads at halftime. LSU misses a last second field goal to tie the game.

Tech wins, 20-17

Matt: Usually powerhouse programs aren’t going to viciously murder a lowly team like Southeastern, which  explains the fact that LSU only beat them by 31. But Tech isn’t as lowly and I expect the Tiger starters to stay in longer than they did against SELA. Tech will be crushed, and that’s a tepid taek.

LSU wins by 50+

Josh: This game has been circled on my calendar ever since it was announced. After 2 years of single point losses to SEC teams on the road, I’m convinced that this is our year. After watching J’Mar struggle against USA and then put up phenomenal stats against Southern, I’m double convinced that this is our year. After signing a DB that turned out to be an absolute monster in Amik Robertson and watching him get better every game, I’m triple convinced that this is our year. After bargaining with the devil on if my soul was worth enough to buy us a win, I’m quadruple convinced that this is our year. However, that all went out the door with LSU losing to Troy last year. They won’t let a G5 team come into their house and beat them again. You could have convinced me with a myriad of reasons to why we have a legit chance to upset them. But Troy did it last year and it’s still on their minds. There’s no way they let it happen again.

Screw that, gimme them Dawgs!!

Tech wins, 28-27

Daniel S: As stated above, Tech will have a good lead at halftime. But LSU will come back in the second half, causing Tech Fan Depression™ to come out in full force as it looks like all is lost. That is until LSU misses an extra point that would’ve tied the game.

Tech wins, 35-34

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