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POSTGAME: LSU falls to Alabama, 29-0

It was unpleasant

NCAA Football: Alabama at Louisiana State
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Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

In one of the biggest college football matchups of the year, LSU fell 29-0 to Alabama on Saturday night in Death Valley.

While the Tigers’ defense put on a solid performance, the offense miserably failed to replicate the same type of dominant effort. The LSU offense totaled just x yards all game long.

To begin the action, LSU won the toss and elected to defer, setting up Alabama at the 25 yard-line to start the game. It took Tua Tagovailoa and the offense all of less than a minute to drive into LSU territory.

But the Tigers’ defense showed out early, disrupting the drive with a pass from Tagovailoa to receiver Jerry Jeudy resulting in an 8-yard loss, followed by an incomplete pass to Josh Jacobs in a drive that resulted in an Alabama punt. This marked the first opening drive of the year in which the Crimson Tide have failed to score a touchdown.

Quarterback Joe Burrow and the LSU offense took over with just under 10 minutes remaining in the first quarter, with a drive that was quickly put to a stop by a formidable Alabama defense.

Alabama was back at midfield just seconds later, opening its second offensive effort of the day with a 17-yard pass from Tagovailoa to Jacobs, followed by a 14-yarder to Henry Ruggs. A 28-yard gain by Najee Harris to set up a 15-yard touchdown reception by Ruggs that put Alabama on the board first with 4:58 remaining in the quarter.

Alabama’s kicking woes - the only true weakness of the team - struck again though, and the extra point by Joseph Bulovas failed, leaving his team up 6-0.

LSU’s offense failed to get anything going until the end of the first quarter, when it crossed the 50-yard line for the first time of the night. The Tigers made it up to the Alabama 42-yard line, before ending yet another drive with a punt.

The Crimson Tide continued to move the chains though, putting points on the board again in the second quarter, as a 23-yard field goal by Bulovas extended the lead to 9-0 with 6:59 remaining in the half.

LSU responded with a drive that looked like it had potential, bringing them to the 47. But it ended in a Josh Growden punt to give the Alabama offense yet another try from the 15-yard line with 4:32 left in the second quarter.

The Alabama offense threatened yet again at the bottom of the half, but that drive was shut down by a Todd Harris interception, marking Tua Tagovailoa’s first interception of the season. The Tigers failed to capitalize on the play though, capping off with a 46-yard punt by Zach Von Rosenberg.

Alabama wasted no time when its offense returned to the field, this time leaving with a score. Tagovailoa delivered a 25-yard strike to Irv Smith Jr. to further the Alabama lead, 16-0 with just over a minute remaining in the second quarter.

Both teams’ defenses held in the second half until Tagovailoa rushed for a 44-yard touchdown of his own to give Alabama a comfortable 22-0 lead with 5:14 remaining in the third quarter. Alabama would have been up by 23 at that point, but the extra point was blocked by Austin Deculus.

The Tigers finally had a chance to put points on the board with 33-yard attempt by Cole Tracy at the bottom of the fourth quarter, but the kick went wide, leaving LSU scoreless with just under 11 minutes left.

Alabama responded with another touchdown drive of its own. The Tide traveled 80 yards in 8 plays, resulting in a Damien Haris one yard touchdown run to put the game on ice.

LSU would reach the red zone again, threatening to put its first points of the game on the board. However, Joe Burrow threw an interception on third and goal, dooming the attempt.

“They were really, really good. They had a really good game plan, and they executed it to a T. We just weren’t tough or physical enough or ready enough to make the plays,” Burrow said after the game.

The Tigers play their next game on the road against the Arkansas Razorbacks next Saturday, on Nov. 10. A kickoff time has still yet to be determined.