AUBURN, Ala. — It’s only fitting that the temperature inside Jordan-Hare Stadium this evening is as high as the pressure on both head coaches between Auburn vs. No. 18 LSU.
In hopes of picking up the major SEC West victory, Auburn will make several adjustments to its starting lineup and, as earlier reported, its play-calling duties on offense. LSU was forced to tweak its own set of starters, too, thanks to a major injury on the offensive line.
Here’s the major news you need to know prior to kickoff tonight:
A trio of starting lineup changes for Auburn
Once again, Auburn will shake up the starting lineup at wide receiver Saturday in hopes of jump-starting the offense.
Ryan Davis will replace senior Marcus Davis in the lineup after a rough game against Texas A&M last Saturday. Tony Stevens and Darius Slayton will round out the 3-man starting lineup at this position.
At free safety, Auburn will start Nick Ruffin over Stephen Roberts. Ruffin made the start in Week 1 against Clemson because of Roberts’ suspension. The starting safety combination will be Ruffin and Tray Matthews, with Rudy Ford lining up at the nickel.
An interesting note for Auburn at linebacker — with the Tigers getting ready to face an LSU team that runs a pro-style offense, all three regular players there are listed at starter. Deshaun Davis is the starter at weakside linebacker, Tre’ Williams is the starter down the middle, and Darrell Williams will start on the strongside.
New starting five up front for LSU
As Ross Dellenger of The Advocate reported Friday, LSU right tackle Toby Weathersby did not travel to Auburn this weekend because of an injury.
— Ross Dellenger (@RossDellenger) September 23, 2016
Now Auburn knows who will face off with the defensive line Saturday night. Les Miles’ team will move right guard Maea Teuhema to the right tackle spot and place Josh Boutte into the starting lineup at right guard.
Boutte was suspended earlier this season for a dangerous late hit in LSU’s season-opening loss to Wisconsin. According to SEC Country’s own Alex Hickey, LSU used seven different offensive line combinations in Week 3 against Mississippi State.
No visor for Gus Malzahn?
Auburn will look differently on the sideline Saturday evening, with offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee calling the plays for the Tigers.
The sideline also will look different thanks to Malzahn, who is wearing a hat instead of his trademark visor.
Cap, no visor, for LSU. pic.twitter.com/Am6A7MNQW6
— Auburn Gold Mine (@AUGoldMine) September 24, 2016
One would guess Malzahn’s change to the hat has something to do with the switch to Lashlee on the offensive play-calling front. The Tigers won’t be looking for the trademark visor whenever they have the ball Saturday.