Before we move forward to Tulane, one last look at the Auburn game with this week's Behind the Numbers.
21/4.5/2.0. Kelvin Sheppard and Harry Coleman's combined tackles/tackles for a loss/sack defensive lines. Over the past few years, the one consistent criticism of LSU's defense has been that of the linebacker play. Even the best LSU defenses seemed to lack a dominant linebacker. Harry Coleman had a spectacular game, forcing a fumble on both of his sacks and forcing an incompletion that was very close to a third fumble. But Kelvin Sheppard was everywhere. Coleman made the highlight reel plays, but Sheppard made what seemed like every other play. Both of these linebackers had simply outstanding games. If I would have told you that linebacker would be a team strength in the preseason, would you have believed me?
1/9. Auburn's third down conversions in the first three quarters. Auburn turned it around a bit in the fourth and finally got their fourth down act together against the second stringers, but LSU's defense dominated on third down. LSU's defense, unlike against Florida, stopped drives.
9-86-1. Terrance Toliver's receiving numbers. He has become Jordan Jefferson's go to receiver. Brandon LaFell had a few key drops in the game (and still had a nice game), but Toliver caught 9 of Jefferson's 22 completions. His longest catch was only 14 yards, so a lot of those catches were those security blanket type of catches. Short catches for positive gains.
11-26. Charles Scott and Keiland Williams combined rushing numbers. That is not good, especially when you consider Scott gained 8 yards on his first carry. From that point on, LSU's running backs gained 18 yards on 10 carries, 9 of them by Scott. Guh.
4 for 5. Red zone efficiency has been a problem all year, so getting four scores on five trips to the red zone is major progress. Three of the four scores were touchdowns, which is even more progress. Looking ahead, LSU will need this kind of efficiency to beat Bama.