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Behind the Box Score: Texas A&M

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So long to a Tiger great

LSU vs Texas A&M
One last time.
Photo by Chris Parent/Collegiate Images/Getty Images

The world you are looking for is dismal. More than anything, it was an ugly game played in ugly conditions which could have only possibly be interesting to A&M fans. It was nearly unwatchable football, a both teams struggled to outdo each other with offensive ineptitude.

It was bad, it what I was saying. After a season in which the team could not stop anyone at all, the defense finally shows up and plays well, only for the offense to disappear. It’s been that kind of year.

267. By a statistical quirk, both teams ended the game with exactly 267 yards of offense. That’s awful. There is no way around it, both teams sucked out loud. This wasn’t great defense, this was incompetent offense. LSU ran one more play than A&M, so the yards per play was almost exactly the same as well. The major difference was…

3. LSU turnovers. Good teams would have a problem going -3 on turnovers but a bad team like this LSU team? Nope. You aren’t overcoming a negative three turnover margin on the road against a ranked team, no matter how lousy they are playing, and it was pretty darn lousy. And they weren’t small turnovers. Most of them were back-breakers. TJ Finley threw an interception one play after a touchdown pass was taken off the board by replay officials. It was the first time all game LSU had threatened and instead of 10-7 dogfight, it was still a domination n which the LSU offense couldn’t do anything.

LSU had a chance to bounce back in the second half and came out of the gates completely listless. The teams traded punts twice, but on the fourth punt of that exchange, LSU muffed the punt catch, and A&M recovered in LSU territory. The defense stiffened and A&M actually had to punt, pinning LSU back to the nine yard line, from where Finley threw his second interception of the game, this one a pick six.

11-79. LSU penalties and yards. The mating all of the loser is “the refs screwed us.” However, the refs had what seemed to only be a passing familiarity with the rulebook. They also flagged A&M 9 times for 83 yards, frequently mis-spotted the ball to the extent it started to seem intentional, and well, took a TD off the board by replay. The reason bad teams complain about the refs more is not that the refs screw bad teams more often, it’s that bad teams are much less able to overcome a bad call. LSU needed things to break their way to win this game. Instead, they got a series of 50/50 calls that went the wrong way coupled with a bunch of turnovers. If it weren’t for bad luck, I wouldn’t have no luck at all.

1.4. LSU’s average yards per rush. That is excretable. Take out the QB rushing yards, and Ty Davis-Price and John Emery combined for 15 carries and 31 yards for a 2.1 yard average and a long of six yards. SIX.

11/34-105. Kellen Mond’s line. LSU lost to that. Mond was flat out bad. But TJ Finley was horrific and Max Johnson wasn’t much better until his final face-saving drive. Finley went 9/25 for 118, which is actually better than Mond until you account for the two back-breaking interceptions. Johnson went 14/22 for 113 yards. 8/12 for 77 yards of that on the final drive. It was a race to the bottom for QB play.

10-134-1. Terrace Marshall’s receiving line. He goes out like the stud he is. Another 100-yard game, another touchdown, and another receiver off to the NFL. Happy trails, Terrace.