The second of three home games against Louisiana teams is tonight at 7:00 CT as LSU welcomes nearby New Orleans to the PMAC. All three of the teams in this stretch will be from the Southland Conference. LSU is coming off a somewhat impressive win over Northwestern State, in which the Tigers led pretty much the entire game and finished with 88 total points. It shows how LSU may have the firepower offensively to compete this year, though there is still plenty for the Tigers to work on.
The first statistic that jumps out is the high amount of turnovers that the Tigers had against Northwestern State. 22 total, including 6 from Johnny O'Bryant, is far too many. I've mentioned many times previously that generally the reason for JOB's turnovers is that he is sometimes unwilling to give up the ball when he gets double teamed or if the defense is good at a particular time. As the focal point of the offense this year, he really needs to be willing to make quick passes, because the offense will get him the ball anytime he is open.
One area the Tigers have looked very good is rebounding the basketball. LSU actually leads the nation at this point after hauling in 64 total against Northwestern State. It makes it hard to complain about a relatively pedestrian night shooting(41%) when LSU is able to grab 27 total offensive rebounds from some of those misses.
The key players, I thought, for this season would be Shavon Coleman and Malik Morgan. To this point they still haven't had a break out game, so it will be interesting to see if it is forthcoming or if they will struggle to become the "sixth man" in this system. At this point, I still consider Hickey the starter off the bench, and thus far there hasn't been a consistent scorer from the bench at this point.
On the flip side, this is essentially UNO's first game of the season. Although they have a 1-0 record at this point, it was basically a scrimmage for the opposing team and won't even count against their record. It will be a huge difference in talent level from the other team to LSU, so I would expect UNO to struggle with the defensive sets they will face against LSU. Overall I think LSU will likely be bigger favorites in this game and will likely cruise to an easy win. UNO still has some work to do rebuilding the program though they are making bigger steps each year. It's a game that the Tigers should start to play every season, as it is only the first since 2005.
Game time is set for 7:00 CT and the game can be seen this time on CST or the Geauxzone.