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Runnin’ down a dream

October 23, 2009

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This weekend’s write-up will have to be brief – Josephine and I are off to New Orleans for a friend’s wedding tomorrow. It may actually be a blessing in disguise to not be able to watch the game. My only fear is being so deep in enemy Tiger territory that my mouth will get the better of me, and their fists will get the better of me. Ahhh…..

Gone are the lofty expectations post West Virginia and Tennessee. Gone too are the dreams of New Year’s Day or Eve bowls. Auburn is saddled now with defending themselves against the hordes until they win again. There hasn’t been much optimism online and even less around the BBQ houses of the Plains. It would be safe to say in Joe’s random and unscientific sample that fewer than 5% of the fan base here give us a snowball’s chance in hell.

I’m not sure I’m giving us much of a chance either….

On offense, I would run, run and run and then run some more. I wouldn’t start Todd or Caudle at QB. I wouldn’t even put Kodi in to begin. I would direct snap to Tate or Fannin or McCalebb and just run. Run like the hounds of aforementioned hell are springing out of the gates in the end zone behind us. LSU’s run defense has been average at best so far this year. Florida wasn’t afraid to dive like Greg Louganis against their front and the Gators almost cracked 200 yards in the process.

Yes, the LSU secondary is potent, and we’ve all learned from the past two weeks that defenses have realized we only have two true receiver threats – neutralize those and you’re so safe you may as well live in Honolulu.

I guess what I am asking Coach Malzahn is this: if we run and win, does anyone care about the balanced output stat?

Does it suck to be Chris Tood right now? I suppose not if you count the award watch lists.

On defense, we can expect to see a heavy dose of running in return. If LSU’s defense has survived on name, LSU’s offense has thrived on mediocrity: less than 300 yards per contest, or last in the conference. Now, before we all rush to get excited about this, remember how abysmal the stat sheet looked for Arkansas and Kentucky before they both feasted on our D. Yeah – to sum it up, Auburn’s defense stands better than a blackjack player’s chances of making LSU look potent again.

There are better days ahead – Furman? But for this weekend, I don’t look for our defense to do much against a well rested, 230+ pound back charging downhill behind some of the most well fed specimens on the planet. And lest we forget, Jordan Jefferson can throw, can run and can very well beat us single-handedly.

Don’t forget the absolute dream slate of depth on our defense – our very own Navy Nightmare?

Special teams, or my open letter to Jay Boulware, et al:

  • Rush 11 on punts and screw the fumble fall-down electric slide return
  • Kick the ball out-of-bounds when you hear, “Waaaaarrrrrrrr Eagle, HEY!”
  • Keep doing what you’re doing on opponent FGs and PATs (or 2 out of 3 ain’t bad, right?)

Three weeks ago, this looked like an Auburn upset and revenge match. Today, Friday, Oct. 23rd it is a much different vision.

Auburn 14, LSU 24

The rest of the league (abbreviated version).

Arkansas vs. Ole Miss. Big unknowns: (1) how well Arkansas rebounds from the UF loss, (2) Is Ole Miss finally playing up to expectations. This is a tough one to call, but I am going with Petrino, Arkansas 35, Ole Miss 28

Tennessee vs. UAT. Sort of like pulling for the North Koreans against the Russians – you wish the field would open up and swallow them all to hell (had hell on the brain this blog wouldn’t you say?). UT 14, Alabama 21

La. Monroe vs. Kentucky. The Warhawks best chance is for the Wildcats to be hungover. ULM 17, Kentucky 24

Vanderbilt vs. South Carolina. I wonder how closely Spurrier will watch the Vandy FG kicker? Vandy 6, South Carolina 21

Florida vs. Mississippi State. I wonder if Urban Meyer will love on Dan the way he did Tebow? THE FLORIDA 27, Miss. State 14

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