Week 2 is in the books. The Dawgs looked, for the most part, dominant against another team I expected them to look dominant against. After a rather shaky start, the offense kicked into gear and the reborn defense under Grantham was clicking on all cylinders Saturday night. While I would be happy to discuss and write a lengthy blog about the Week 2 Game, let’s be honest….It’s go time and the season starts now. For the last 3 months, I have an LSU friend who would text me every other week “Week 3!”
This game has been circled on the calendar since it was announced this past Spring/Summer that it would be a 6pm primetime game. Adding to the impact of this game, SEC Nation and one of Dan Mullen’s former talented QBs Timmy T will be in town.
The impact this game could have for both teams going forward this season cannot be overlooked. LSU has looked very strong in their first couple of games as anticipated. They dominated BYU in the season opener in NOLA and manhandled the Chattanooga fighting Tianos this past Saturday. None of this was that big of a surprise. While they are under a new regime in Baton Rouge with Coach O and a new Mike the Tiger, I see the same LSU we are all used to seeing: dominant defense, superior run game, and a QB that will make a great broadcaster later in life.
So what does this mean for our beloved Dawgs? Well, in my opinion, I think we have a shot. I see a lot of similarities to the 2014 game in which Dak and the Dawgs rolled down to Baton Rouge and came away with a victory. Nicky Fitz is no Dak by any means, but he has continually shown his ability to break games open with his legs. While his arm leaves a lot to be desired, his overwhelming ability to get to the second level and run past LB and DBs is a sight to see and something MSU will scheme to try and create. Also similar to the 2014 team, we have a more than capable running back in Aeris Williams who should relieve some of the pressure the Aranda defense will aim to put on Fitz.
I bring up Aranda because I believe the matchup to watch is much more not any players on the field but all in the coaches on the sideline. Dan is a great offensive mind who continues to show that if you give him a good QB he can give defensive coaches headaches. Dave Aranda is the gold standard for defensive coaching right now and I am shocked he is still not a head coach somewhere yet (seriously this guy is a genius and will make a Big 10 school very happy). The chess match between Dan and Aranda should be a joy/nerve racking sight.
All of this to say, LSU is a -6.5 favorite (currently) over the Dawgs in Stark this weekend for just reasons. The Dawgs will need a couple balls to bounce their way if they hope to come out with a victory. But this team need only look back 3 years for its inspiration and blueprint for how to take down Coach O and his Tigas. With Dan Mullen, a decent QB, and an aggressive defense, I like the Dawgs chances of hitting LSU in the mouth early and seeing if we can shock the world again.