STARKVILLE, Miss. — After its worst loss in three years, the LSU football team dropped quite a distance in the USA Today Amway Coaches Poll.
LSU (2-1, 0-1 SEC) dropped 12 spots to No. 23 in the Coaches Poll from its spot last week at No. 12 after a 37-7 loss to Mississippi State (3-0, 1-0) Saturday. As a result of beating LSU, Mississippi State jumped from being unranked to sitting at No. 19 in the Coaches Poll.
Mississippi State outplayed LSU in every phase Saturday night. The Bulldogs outgained the Tigers by almost 200 yards, earned almost twice as many first downs, were flagged for less than half as many penalty yards and were 31 percent more successful on third downs.
Quarterback Danny Etling completed 13 of his 29 pass attempts for 137 yards, 97 of which came in the fourth quarter when LSU was already down by three or more touchdowns. Running back Derrius Guice wasn’t much more effective, rushing for 76 yards, only 10 of which came in the second half. Etling and Guice combined to score zero touchdowns.
Coming into the Mississippi State game, LSU led the nation in rushing defense. This will no longer be the case after Saturday, as Mississippi State rushed for 285 yards, 5.9 yards per carry, and two touchdowns. LSU’s secondary didn’t look much better, allowing Mississippi State quarterback Nick Fitzgerald to throw for 180 yards and two touchdowns, including a 45-yard connection to Keith Mixon for a score in the third quarter.
From the end of the first quarter through the beginning of the fourth quarter, Mississippi State scored either a touchdown or a field goal on seven consecutive drives.
LSU will return to the field for a non-conference matchup next Saturday versus Syracuse. The game will be played at 6 p.m. CT and be broadcast nationally on ESPN2. Stay posted to SEC Country for updates on the Tigers as they prepare for their next game.