Week 1 of college football is behind us, and the LSU Tigers are sitting at 0-1. This defeat came at the hands of Mississippi State and will leave a bad taste in the mouth of all Tiger fans for the foreseeable future.
When someone thinks of a day in Death Valley, the first thought that usually comes to mind is a crowd roaring loud enough to start an earthquake. On Saturday Sept. 26, there were a measly 21,124 fans occupying the seats in Tiger Stadium due to COVID-19 precautions. In a stadium that can hold 102,321 fans, the LSU supporters' cheers turned into whispers.
The adrenaline that is brought upon the players in purple and gold whilst looking up in the bright lights and seeing thousands willing them on is unlike any other. On a third-and-two play, the chants that deafen the opposing quarterback to be able to hear the coaches’ play calls are as significant as any player on the defense. These are the type of factors that will be missed throughout the 2020-2021 campaign.
One would love to blame the loss on the lack of fans, but that just is not enough to validate the monstrosity that was witnessed on Saturday.
Myles Brennan’s debut as the new leader for the team was one that left much to be desired. Throwing two interceptions along with 19 incompletions left the offense in disarray. Multiple times throughout the game, Brennan held the ball in the pocket and was sacked a total of seven times. The redshirt junior has big shoes to fill. Moving forward, it will be up to him, whether or not he is known as an LSU great, or just another quarterback whose name fades away over time.
Derek Stingley Jr. 's absence due to illness was evident within the defense in this matchup. The defense allowed 632 total yards, with 623 yards coming through the air. Defensive coordinator Bo Pelini has some serious work to do entering the teams next contest against Vanderbilt.
The mediocre performance by the Tigers have sent them on a landslide from number six in the country to 20. Before supporters press the panic button, let's take a second and assess the situation.
LSU made history in the offseason with having a whopping total of 30 players leave the team. The coaches and players have a lot of adjusting to do before the team will be dominant.
And by no means is football a one man game, but Derek Stingley Jr.’s return will light a spark for the defense. The first team All-American's presence alone on the field is enough to take pressure off his teammates’ shoulders.
It was unrealistic to think that the team would pick up right where they left off. It is practically a whole different team. Give the all-star coaching staff some time to work out the kinks, and the Tigers will be roaring by the end of the season.