• LSUBEAT.com • Schedules • Depth Chart • Recruits • LSU in NFL • LSU Gear

Saturday, September 05, 2009

LSU survives, gives Miles teaching point

BATON ROUGE - Good teams can play poorly and still manage to win.

That is what LSU did in a scary, 31-23 victory over an upstart Washington team early Sunday morning at Husky Stadium in Seattle.

If football had five quarters, LSU may well have lost the latest game in its history. The Tigers, who started at 9:36 p.m. central time and finished at about 1 a.m., were running on coffee grinds and had just enough to hold on, particularly on defense.

Holding Washington to a field goal to keep the score 24-16 late in the fourth quarter was critical. The Tigers had one of their few third-down stops to force that field goal. Then the offense and quarterback Jordan Jefferson went right down and scored to take a 31-16 lead.

The defense struggled immensely early on as it allowed 7 of 9 third-down conversions in the first half and 296 yards, but it finished strong. Jefferson also looked frazzled in the first half, and he finished with a flourish. That's what the good teams do. They may plod along for a spell, but in the end they get it right.

The defense ended up allowing just 182 yards in the second half and stopped the thriving offense of new coach Steve Sarkisian when it needed to do so. Jefferson, who was 3 of 8 for 65 yards in the first half, was 8 of 11 for 107 yards and three touchdowns in the second half. He put the game away when he drilled a 6-yard touchdown pass across the field to Brandon LaFell with 1:54 to go for the 31-16 lead. Previously he found Terrance Toliver for a 45-yard touchdown and 17-10 lead and again on a 39-yard touchdown for a 24-13 lead.

Tolliver for the first time looked like he will answer his potential. Washington could not contain him.

The defense has to get much better. New defensive coordinator John Chavis' unit looked a lot like last year's unit with the missed tackles and the gaping holes in the middle. But Chavis made adjustments during the game and got things settled down. He'll get the defense better as the season progresses.

LSU survived Seattle and will end up being a better team for it.

"This is a very dangerous team," LSU coach Les Miles said of the Huskies, who did not look like a team that has lost 15 in a row. "We prevailed. It was a very satisfying win even though we made it more difficult than it should've been. We should've put it away earlier."

Miles can teach much from the misadventures of this game.

"Coach can say, 'BS' a couple more times and get the players' attention," Miles said.

LSU came to Seattle as a very overconfident team to be coming off an 8-5 season. It will leave Seattle knowing that if it does not get better over the next month, it could be 8-5 again.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

No team can afford to double cover LaFell and Tolliver, so LSU's passing game should be very good.

I have more confidence in Chavis correcting the defensive mistakes than I did the co-guys last year.

3:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't cringe Glenbeau, but Miles said, "that would get some of the folks stuck in the box out of the box and would allow us to have some of those runs that we’d like to have with Charles Scott."

10:39 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home