I returned home from the wedding a little drunk and on a positive vibe. I had listened to the LSU-Alabama game in the car and as far as I knew, the game was 15-10 LSU late in the third and I was pretty excited to watch an epic fourth quarter.
Yeah, not so much.
Watching just the fourth quarter of the game was a bitter, bitter experience. Alabama had three drives which went FG, TD, FG while LSU's offense sputtered and failed to even gain a first down. I want to bitch about The Call, which was awful but entirely expected given the SEC's track record this season, but it looks like people already beat me to the punch.
But when you just watch the fourth quarter, it's impossible to blame this on one call. LSU went into the tank when the game mattered most. No first downs in the fourth quarter. The officials didn't do that, LSU's offense did. Julio Jones getting a long TD catch off a screen pass untouched, that wasn't the officials doing, that was the LSU defense.
Patrick Peterson's non-interception was a key play, but not nearly as big as LSU's failure to get two yards on 3rd and 2 up 15-13. If LSU converts there, maybe they can put together a drive, or at least give the defense a much needed breather. Instead, LSU punted and then Julio Jones made his big catch. With Peterson sitting on the bench, still trying to recover from injury.
There is the key to the game. LSU just suffered too many injuries in the course of the game to recover. Charles Scott has a broken collarbone and is likely out for the rest of the season. Jordan Jefferson went down with a hurt ankle and Jarrett Lee was not exactly stellar coming in relief. Peterson missed a lot of the second half with cramps but kept gamely trying to compete. Patrick Peterson is an absolute stud and this game was his national coming out party. If he's not already the best cornerback in the country, I'd hate to see the guy who is better. Ciron Black, Al Woods, and Perry Riley also all missed time due to injury. That's not just six starters, it's six of our most irreplaceable players.
This sucks, because I don't feel that Alabama is a better team. They didn't beat us like Florida did. For the first time all year, our offensive line looked pretty good. I want to blame the officials but I can't. It was just too many injuries, and too much to overcome. If only, if only, if only. But if doesn't matter. LSU lost. Scott is out for the year. And Alabama is the SEC West champs.
And we're still waiting for our first first down of the fourth quarter. 3rd and 2. 15-13. One yard. We didn't know it at the time, but we lost the game on that play.