In a weird year, LSU had a weird week.
Its game against Missouri that was supposed to be played at 8 p.m. on Saturday in Baton Rouge was played at 11 a.m. in Columbia, Missouri. Despite these changes, the most unlikely result of the entire week was LSU’s 45-41 loss to Missouri.
As unlikely as the loss seemed, one look at the stat sheet reveals how it became inevitable. For starters, Missouri gained 586 total yards as compared to LSU’s 479. Missouri finished with 180 yards rushing while LSU only had 49. LSU was 0-10 on third down conversions, while Missouri was 5-10. These statistics turned the game from a false reality into a nightmare.
The defense for LSU, or lack thereof, was the story of the day. Fans were not the only ones upset with the play on the defensive side of the ball though. LSU Head Coach Ed Orgeron was equally frustrated.
“This loss was all on the defense,” Orgeron said. “We’ve got to get it fixed. Whatever it is, we’ve got to get it fixed.”
Missouri freshman quarterback Connor Bazelak torched the LSU defense in his first career start. He finished 29-of-34 for 406 yards passing and four touchdowns. Senior running back Larry Rountree added 119 yards rushing on 18 attempts to lead the ground game for Mizzou.
Although the Bo Pelini defense was flat-out beat for the second time in three weeks, Orgeron still believes the best is yet to come for the defensive coordinator and his squad, but not without major improvement.
“I love Bo (Pelini). He’s going to be a great defensive coordinator, but we have to get better. We have to coach better on defense,” Orgeron said.
One bright spot for LSU was Myles Brennan. Although at times the offense did not play well as a whole, Brennan played exactly the way an SEC quarterback should play, win or lose. He finished 29-of-48 with 430 yards passing and four touchdowns with no interceptions. Without his strong play, the game could have been much worse. But Brennan was the first to say how displeased he was with the offense.
“Personally, we have a lot to fix offensively,” Brennan said. “We didn’t execute on third down like we needed to.”
As displeased as he was with the result of the game, Brennan said the team has no intention of throwing in the towel on this season and will only get stronger because of the loss.
“You only get stronger through adversity. We are going through some adversity right now,” Brennan said. “We are going to get stronger. We are going to fight.”
Ultimately, LSU was outplayed by Missouri on both sides of the ball, resulting in a loss not many expected.
Receiver Terrace Marshall summed up the loss best.
“The world isn’t perfect,” he said. “You’re going to have good and bad days. Today was one of those days.
Missouri outplayed us.”